Safe Boating Course


CHAPTER 1: The Boat


Federal and state law requires that you have specific safety equipment on board depending on the class of your boat.

To know whether you need flares, a fire extinguisher, a flashlight, an air horn or all of the above, you’ll need to know the boat’s class.

Boat classes are determined by boat length. Let’s review the four different classes of recreational boats as determined by length. 

Class A: Less than 16 ft.

CLASS A: Less than 16 ft.

Class 1: Between 16 and 26 ft.

CLASS 1: 16 ft. to less than 26 ft.

Class 2: Between 26 and 40 ft.

CLASS 2: 26 ft. to less than 40 ft.

Class 3: Between 40 and 65 ft.

CLASS 3: 40 ft. to less than 65 ft.

To find out a boat’s length, measure along its center line from the outside of the bow to the outside of the stern. That means any attachments, such as swim platforms or wakeboard towers, don't count towards its length.