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When do I need to wear a Personal Flotation Device (PFD)?
PFDs must be worn at all times* on:
- Powerboats up to and including 4.8m.
- Off the beach yachts and paddle craft.
PFDs must be worn at times of heightened risk* on:
- Powerboats greater than 4.8m up to 12m.
- All yachts.
* When in an open area of a vessel which is underway.
A boat licence is required to operate a powerboat vessel and an appropriate licence endorsement is required to operate a personal water craft, such as jetski. Operators 12-16 years of age can apply for a restricted licence, which allows them to operate boats under certain conditions. Boat licences can be obtained by:
- Completing a recreational power boat operator licence test with VicRoads.
- Completing an approved training course from an approved registered training organisation.
For more license information, visit the Vic Roads website.
Boating safety tips
- Before heading out, ensure that your safety equipment is on board the boat and easily accessible. Make a habit of running a regular maintenance check on your boat.
- Seek up-to-date local knowledge, particularly if you are going boating, as conditions of rivers and lakes may be affected by low water levels.
- Take extreme caution and operate your vessel at a safe speed.
- Tree stumps and other submerged objects can present a hazard to the safe operation of boat on inland waters, particularly those operating at speed. It is the responsibility of the boat operator to operate at a safe speed.
For more boat safety information, visit the Transport Safety Victoria website or call 1800 223 022.