Most Frequent Boating Violations

The following are the most frequent boating law violations compiled by the Michigan Marine Publications, based on interviews with experienced law enforcement officials.

Operating Violations:

  1. Skiing, tubing, or towing without a proper observer.
  2. Excessive noise, both on water and on the shoreline.
  3. Coming closer than 100 feet to docks, boats, swimmers, and other provisions of the 100 foot rule. (PERSONAL WATERCRAFT ARE FREQUENT VIOLATORS.)
  4. Lights not displayed between sunset and sunrise or not using proper red/green bow light and all around white light.
  5. Operating a Personal Watercraft after sunset.

Safety Equipment Violations:

  1. Personal Flotation Devices (PFD’s):
    • Not the proper types on boats.
    • No type IV (throwables) on boats over 16 feet.
    • Insufficient number for passengers aboard.
    • Not readily available or accessible.
    • Not the proper size (especially for children).
    • Not being worn by children 6 years and under.
  2. Fire Extinguisher requirements not met:
    • None aboard.
    • Not serviceable.
    • Not the proper type.

Registration Violations:

  1. Certificate of registration not aboard.
  2. Improper display of numbers (location, size, spacing).
  3. Failure to transfer ownership within 15 days of sale.