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Boating safety course scheduled

The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary's state-approved About Boating Safely course will be taught Saturday, May 12 at the Madisonville Town Hall (enter on Water Street, next to Morton's), from 8 a.m. until about 4:30 p.m.

Louisiana law states: 'No person born after January 1, 1984, shall operate a motorboat powered by a motor in excess of ten horsepower, unless he has successfully completed a boating safety class approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators. A person who has completed an approved boating safety class shall be in possession of evidence of such completion when operating such a boat.' This law also applies to operators of personal water craft (PWCs), however, no person under the age of 16 may operate a PWC at any time.

'The Coast Guard Auxiliary's course is valid for all jurisdictions,” explained Jay Culotta, public affairs officer, Northlake Flotilla. “Those who complete the course receive a certificate, as well as a wallet card to be carried by those subject to the age requirement. Without such proof, an operator is subject to large fines and possible termination of the voyage and seizure of the vessel.”

Students will learn about the different types of boats and personal water craft, safety equipment the Coast Guard requires to be aboard a vessel while underway, the rules of the road such as which boat has the right-of-way under varying operating conditions, how to dock a boat, trailering and towing, what the various aids to navigation are and how to read a marine chart.

The cost is $25.00, online or by telephone, before February 11, and at the door, $30.00. Discounts are available for multiple family members who share materials. The fee includes the About Boating Safely course book, a CD of the course for later review and other valuable material explaining federal rules.

Register online at or call 985-845-9266 and leave your contact information if you receive the voice mail message. Other times and dates are available at
Or you could take the course FREE online in the comfort of your own home. This course is USCG approved and recognized. My 11 year old did it all by himself and it only took him a few afternoons. He got his card a few weeks later in the mail. Here is the link