You may be using a personal watercraft with a lanyard circuit breaker attached to one end of the motopto and attached to itself at the other. Attachment to you and the PWC is required by law. All newer models have lanyard disconnectors, and with this switch, the engine stops when you fall out of the vehicle. As a personal watercraft operator, you will sail on the hull of the boat without gunwales in which you will be held. Because of this, you`re more likely to fall overboard. If you make sharp turns at high speed, bank the personal watercraft and possibly throw it away. If you fall off the personal watercraft, the lanyard cutter will be disconnected, which will stop the personal watercraft and allow you to return. This is a great built-in security feature. Hopefully, by making good judgment about the boat`s safety and slowing down the speed when turning, you can avoid using this feature.

Persons under the age of 14 are not legally permitted to operate personal watercraft (e.g. jet ski, wave runner). Persons born before 1 July 1996 can legally operate a boat without restrictions. These 14- and 15-year-olds are legally allowed to operate a personal watercraft if they have received a boating safety certificate and in California, 16-year-old boaters can legally operate any motorboat, including personal watercraft. Alaska has no minimum age requirement to legally operate a motorboat or personal watercraft. Persons born on or after July 1, 1996 may not legally operate a motorboat with more than 6 HP unless they have received a boating safety certificate and it is in their possession. While lack of knowledge about the operation of a personal watercraft contributes to some personal watercraft accidents, most accidents are caused by the inexperience, inattention or failure of the operator to monitor hazards, swimmers or other boaters. Operators should take on this responsibility personally by challenging themselves to learn as much as possible about their vehicle and remain vigilant during operation. They must continually sweep the water, especially to check the area behind their personal watercraft before turning.

Combined with general boating, stressors (wind, sun glare, heat, vibration, etc.), tense eye muscles and operator eye strain contribute to the development of temporary tunnel vision known as « boater hypnosis. » Then, the operator looks straight ahead in a trance, without looking for boats or obstacles approaching on the periphery. Shorter trips with frequent breaks help relieve boater hypnosis. Again, it is the operator`s responsibility to know when to call one day. Persons under 16 years of age who do not have a Boating Safety Certificate must be supervised by a person born before July 1, 1972 or by a person at least 18 years of age and holding a valid Boating Safety Certificate if operating a motorized boat 11 feet in length or more. If the vessel is less than 11 feet long, anyone with a valid Boating Safety Certificate may take oversight. Anyone between the ages of 12 and 17 (inclusive) may operate a motorboat or personal watercraft of 10 horsepower or more if accompanied by a person who is at least 18 years of age and has experience operating the vessel or has successfully completed a boating training course approved by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. Click here for more information on how to meet this requirement » When you decide to use the personal watercraft responsibly, there are important information to remember to ensure the safety of your trip. Some information relates exclusively to the mechanics of the boat. Other information is common sense, and the rest of the details include laws.

First, let`s look at operational logistics. A supervisor at least 18 years of age must accompany persons under 12 years of age who wish to operate a motor vessel of more than 8.5 hp on board. The supervisor must be able to immediately take control of the vessel if necessary, and if born after January 1, 1989, he or she must have a boating safety training certificate issued by TWRA. There is no minimum age to operate a boat, but PWC regulations and boat safety requirements are age-specific and apply. The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries encourages all potential operators to take a boating safety course prior to independent operations, especially those with limited boating experience. The safe operation of a personal watercraft must be a conscious decision after knowing the facts. The true meaning of PWC is personal responsibility. Help make this a safe year for boats by not being part of the accident or death picture. Personal watercraft are a lot of fun because of their maneuverability and power. For the same reasons, personal watercraft can be dangerous if not used responsibly.

The potential danger is evident in the 2003 shipping accidents in Virginia, which show that although personal watercraft account for just over 10% of all registered vessels, they were involved in 22.6% of all vessel accidents. As a rapidly growing segment of boating, both in Virginia and across the country, boat operators need to become more safety-conscious through personal responsibility. The word « personnel » in personal watercraft emphasizes the operator`s independent decision to act responsibly. The safe operation of personal watercraft requires quick and responsible decisions based on mature judgment. A person between the ages of 12 and 15 who holds and carries their boatmaster`s training card may drive a boat with an engine of 10 HP or less alone. Another part of personal watercraft that offers advantages and disadvantages to the operator at the same time is the steering. Personal watercraft are very maneuverable, which is what makes them so attractive. A driver can accelerate quickly with a slight throttle movement, making driving exciting. At the same time, the throttle valve can be an obstacle. For example, steering control is lost when the throttle is released or the engine is turned off. This is extremely important if you are trying to get around an obstacle in the water. It is essential to run the engine when you need to run, even if you have to turn slightly.

Responsible operators who know how to manage their personal watercraft avoid collisions with docks, floats and other boats. Some of the most recent models are equipped with trains. The addition of rudders helps to control the vehicle when there is no drive. Although personal watercraft are involved in a disproportionate number of boating accidents (property damage and personal injury), they have a high safety record when it comes to boat fatalities. The main reason for PWC`s low fatality rate is that all PWC operators, passengers and persons towed by personal watercraft must wear a life jacket approved by the U.S. Coast Guard. Other boat operators and passengers only need to have portable life jackets on board, but do not need to wear them. The use of impact-resistant lifejackets by PWC operators and passengers is recommended because high-impact types have more straps on the PFD vest to hold it in the event of a sudden spill into the water at high speed. In addition, jet propulsion is safer than a propeller engine. However, the jet drive inlet attracts loose objects and pulls them through the jet drive like a vacuum cleaner. Objects too large to enter the intake area are held against the intake grilles until the engine is turned off.