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Boat Laws
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ALABAMA BOAT LAWS

Alabama Boating Safety Law

Alabama Boating Laws are administered by Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. 

Basic Alabama Boating Laws

The Roberson/Archer Act of 1994 requires that every person who operates a motorized vessel, including Personal Watercrafts (PWC) on the waters of Alabama must first obtain an Alabama boater safety certification. Does not apply to operators of sailboats, rowboats or canoes.


Statewide licensing of boat operators began in all Alabama counties July 17, 1997 under the Boating Safety Reform Act. You must be at least 12 years of age to operate a motorized vessel on Alabama's waterways. You also must be licensed. A written examination is required for applicants, except those who were 40 or older on April 28, 1994, or those who have successfully completed boating courses given by the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, the U.S. Power Squadron or the Alabama Marine Police "Boating Basics" course. The vessel class "V" must be added to your license if you intend to operate a motorized vessel. This legislation, which also provides sanctions for drunken driving and other offenses, has been hailed as the toughest boating safety act in the country.

Applicants may apply and be tested as necessary at Department of Public Safety Driver License Offices across the state.

Alabama Boating Safety Boat Certification Manual provided by the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Marine Police Division .PDF Format. On-Line by Boat-Ed.com

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