Office of Boating Safety

Welcome to the SAFE BOATING GUIDE. Transport Canada publishes this resource to make sure that you know the regulations that apply to boating and that you learn more about safe and responsible boating practices.

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Everyone who operates a power-driven boat in Canada needs proof of competency — something that shows they understand the rules of the road and how to safely operate a boat. The most common proof of competency is the Pleasure Craft Operator Card. You can get one by passing an accredited boating safety test.

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A boating safety course is the best way to get your Pleasure Craft Operator Card and to learn how to be a safe boater. Find a course provider that offers tests and issues Pleasure Craft Operator Cards in your area.

When you buy a boat, you need to get a pleasure craft licence document with a unique licence number. It’s free. The number allows Search and Rescue personnel to access information in an emergency. You can find Pleasure Craft Licence applications online.

Choosing the right life jacket or Personal Floatation Device (PFD) is very important for keeping you and your onboard guests safe . Here are some tips on choosing the right life jacket or PFD for adults and children; and the labels to look for to be sure it meets Canadian standards. Remember, no matter what life saving device you choose, it won't work if you don't wear it.

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Taking a few minutes to make sure you are ready to boat safely before you leave, can avoid problems when you are out on the water. Complete a pre-departure check list and a sail plan and check the water and weather conditions to ensure that you are well prepared.

Don't mix speed and/or alcohol with boating. Remember that you are responsible for the safety of your guests and others using the waterway. You must always be prepared and alert, since conditions on the water can change quickly.

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Videos

Pleasure Craft Operator Card

Everyone who operates a power-driven boat in Canada needs proof of competency —something that shows they understand the rules of the water and how to safely operate a boat.

 

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