Safe Boating

The Competency of Operators of Pleasure Craft Regulations require all operators of pleasure craft fitted with any type of motor and used for recreational purposes to carry proof of competency on board.* 
Proof of competency indicates the boater has a basic level of boating safety knowledge required for safe recreational boating. In the past, anyone of any age could operate a recreational boat without any minimum boating safety knowledge, experience or training. These requirements were introduced in 1999 in response to boating deaths and injuries, with the goal of improving safety on Canadian waterways through education and training.  
Proof of competency can be any of the following:  


  1. A Pleasure Craft Operator Card -  this is the most common proof, obtained after passing an accredited boating safety test

  2. Proof of having passed a boating safety course in Canada before April 1, 1999

  3. A specified marine certificate from the List of Certificates of Competency, Training Certificates and other Equivalencies accepted as Proof of Competency when Operating a Pleasure Craft

  4. A completed rental-boat safety checklist – good only for the rental period

  5. For Foreign Visitors, an operator card or equivalent which meets the requirements of their own state or country.  


These restrictions are separate from the requirement for proof of competency and both must be followed. This means that youth under 16 years of age require proof of competency to operate any motorized boat, supervised or not.

Select here for Safe Boating Updates

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