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Heads Up, Boaters!

January 01, 2023 12:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

Jean McCormick – January 2023

Here are the new Virginia State Boating Regulations that went into effect January 1, 2023.


This new requirement is like what motorists on the highway are expected to do. When approaching or passing within 200 feet of any law enforcement vessel or emergency services vessel that is displaying flashing blue or red lights, a boater shall slow to "no wake" so that the effect of the wake does not disturb the activities of law enforcement or emergency services personnel.


This new regulation requires that boat operators clean any aquatic organism or vegetation from the vessel's trailer and equipment before departing the boating area. The regulation also requires boat operators to drain and take reasonable measures to dry bilge tanks and ballast tanks before departing a body of water.


The update to the Virginia requirement for fire extinguishers mirrors the new federal fire extinguisher regulation.

This stipulates those boats, model year 2018 or newer, must carry 5B, 10B or 20 B weight rated fire extinguishers. It also stipulates that fire extinguishers on any vessel must not be expired. A fire extinguisher that is 12 years older than the date it was manufactured is considered EXPIRED. 

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