Exemption for specific uses.
This subsection does not apply to any of the following:
A motorboat while competing in a race conducted under a permit from a town, village or city or from an authorized agency of the federal government.
A motorboat designed and intended solely for racing, while the boat is operated incidentally to the testing or tuning up of the motorboat and engine for the race in an area designated by and operated under a permit specified under subd. 1.
A motorboat on an official trial for a speed record if conducted under a permit from a town, village or city.
The operation of a commercial or nonrecreational fishing boat, ferry or other vessel engaged in interstate or international commerce, other than a tugboat.
Exemption by rule.
The department may promulgate by rule exemptions from compliance with this subsection for certain activities for certain types of motorboats for specific uses and for specific areas of operation.
No person may sell, equip or operate, and no owner of a boat may allow a person to operate, a boat with any motor or other propulsion machinery beyond its safe power capacity, taking into consideration the type and construction of such watercraft and other existing operating conditions.
Personal flotation devices. 30.62(3)(a)
Every boat, except a sailboard and except as provided in par. (b)
, shall carry at least one personal flotation device prescribed by federal regulations for each person on board or being attended by the boat, so placed as to be readily accessible and available to the persons.
No person may operate a personal watercraft unless each person riding on the personal watercraft is wearing a personal flotation device that is a type I, type II, type III or type V personal flotation device as specified under 33 CFR part 175
, subpart B.
Safety devices for personal watercraft.
No person may operate a personal watercraft that is equipped by the manufacturer with an engine cutoff switch activated by a lanyard unless the engine cutoff switch is in good working order and the lanyard is attached in the manner prescribed by the manufacturer to the operator or the operator's clothing or personal flotation device. No person may sell a personal watercraft manufactured after January 1, 1993, unless the personal watercraft is equipped by the manufacturer with an engine cutoff switch activated by a lanyard or is equipped by the manufacturer with a self-circling safety feature.
Every motorboat, except outboards of open construction, shall be provided with such number, size and type of fire extinguishers, capable of promptly and effectively extinguishing burning gasoline, as prescribed by rules of the department. Such fire extinguishers shall be at all times kept in condition for immediate and effective use and shall be so placed as to be readily accessible. “Open construction" means construction which will not permit the entrapment of explosive or flammable gases or vapors.
This subsection does not apply to a motorboat while competing in a race conducted pursuant to a permit from a town, village or city or from an authorized agency of the U.S. government, nor does it apply to a boat designed and intended solely for racing, while the boat is operated incidentally to the tuning up of the boat and engine for the race at the race location on the day of the race.
Backfire flame arresters.
Every boat equipped with an inboard motor using gasoline as a fuel shall have the carburetors of every inboard gasoline motor fitted with an efficient device for arresting backfire flames. The device shall meet the specifications prescribed by federal regulations.
Bilge, engine and fuel compartment ventilators.
Every boat, except open boats, using as fuel any liquid of a volatile nature, shall be provided with an efficient natural or mechanical ventilation system which is capable of removing resulting inflammable or explosive gases.
Every motorboat equipped with storage batteries shall be provided with suitable supports and secured against shifting with the motion of the boat. Such storage batteries shall be equipped with a nonconductive shielding means to prevent accidental shorting of battery terminals.
Department may promulgate rules.
The department shall promulgate such rules modifying or supplementing the associated equipment requirements of this section as are necessary to keep those requirements in conformity with federal regulations.
Rental of motorboats. 30.625(1)(1)
No person who is engaged in the rental or leasing of motorboats to the public may do any of the following:
Rent or lease a motorboat for operation by a person who will be operating a motorboat for the first time in each calendar year and who does not hold a valid certificate issued under s. 30.74 (1)
unless the person engaged in the rental or leasing gives the person instruction on how to operate a motorboat in the manner established by the department under s. 30.74 (1) (am)
Rent or lease a personal watercraft to a person under 16 years of age.
Rent or lease a personal watercraft without providing the person who will be operating the personal watercraft with a personal flotation device that meets the requirements specified under s. 30.62 (3) (b)
No person who is under 16 years of age may rent or lease a personal watercraft.
See also s. NR 5.16
, Wis. adm. code.
Sale and use of certain outboard motors restricted. 30.63(1)(1)
No person may sell any new outboard motor for use in the waters of this state unless such motor is equipped with a crankcase effectively sealed to prevent the drainage of raw fuel into the waters in which the motor is operated.
Beginning January 1, 1990, no person may operate an outboard motor in the waters of this state unless such motor is equipped with a crankcase effectively sealed to prevent the drainage of raw fuel into the waters in which such motor is operated.
History: 1973 c. 125
; 1989 a. 56
On lakes 50 acres or less having public access, motorboats may not be operated in excess of slow-no-wake speed, except when such lakes serve as thoroughfares between 2 or more navigable lakes. The department by rule may modify or waive the requirements of this section as to particular lakes, if it finds that public safety is not impaired by such modification or waiver.
History: 1973 c. 302
; Stats. 1973 s. 30.63; 1973 c. 336
; Stats. 1973 s. 30.635.
See also ss. NR 5.20
, Wis. adm. code.
Patrol boats. 30.64(1)(1)
The operator of a patrol boat, including a commission warden, as defined in s. 939.22 (5)
, when responding to an emergency call or when in pursuit of an actual or suspected violator of the law, need not comply with this subchapter or ordinances under s. 30.77
when a siren or emergency light is activated or, if the patrol boat is equipped with a siren and an emergency light, when both the siren and emergency light are activated, and if due regard is given to the safety of other persons in the vicinity. If an emergency light is used, it shall be of a type and design specified under 33 CFR 88.11
Upon the approach of a patrol boat, including a patrol boat operated by a commission warden, as defined in s. 939.22 (5)
, giving an audio or visual signal, the operator of a boat shall reduce the boat speed to slow-no-wake and yield the right-of-way to the patrol boat until it has passed.
No person operating a boat may refuse to stop after being requested or signaled to do so by a law enforcement officer or a commission warden, as defined in s. 939.22 (5)
Traffic rules. 30.65(1)(1)
Meeting; overtaking; right-of-way.
Every person operating a boat shall comply with the following traffic rules, except when deviation therefrom is necessary to comply with federal pilot rules while operating on the navigable waters of the United States:
When 2 motorboats are approaching each other “head and head," or so nearly so as to involve risk of collision, each boat shall bear to the right and pass the other boat on its left side.
When 2 motorboats are approaching each other obliquely or at right angles, the boat which has the other on her right shall yield the right-of-way to the other. “Right" means from dead ahead, clockwise to 2 points abaft the starboard beam.
When a motorboat and a boat propelled entirely by sail or muscular power are proceeding in such a direction as to involve risk of collision, the motorboat shall yield the right-of-way to the other boat.
A boat may overtake and pass another boat on either side if it can be done with safety but the boat doing the overtaking shall yield the right-of-way to the boat being overtaken, notwithstanding any other rule in this section to the contrary.
A boat granted the right-of-way by this section shall maintain her course and speed, unless to do so would probably result in a collision.
Additional traffic rules.
The department may promulgate such additional traffic rules as it deems necessary in the interest of public safety. Such rules shall conform as nearly as possible to the federal pilot rules.
History: 1985 a. 332
s. 251 (1)
; 1993 a. 490
Speed restrictions. 30.66(1)(1)
Speed to be reasonable and prudent.
No person shall operate a motorboat at a speed greater than is reasonable and prudent under the conditions and having regard for the actual and potential hazards then existing. The speed of a motorboat shall be so controlled as to avoid colliding with any object lawfully in or on the water or with any person, boat or other conveyance in or on the water in compliance with legal requirements and exercising due care.
In addition to complying with sub. (1)
, no person may operate a motorboat at a speed in excess of the posted notice as established by regulatory markers.
No person may operate a motorboat within 100 feet of any dock, raft, pier, or buoyed restricted area on any lake at a speed in excess of slow-no-wake.
Except as provided in subd. 2.
, no person may operate a motorboat, other than a personal watercraft, at a speed in excess of slow-no-wake within 100 feet of the shoreline of any lake.
In its ordinances enacted under s. 30.77
, a city, village, town, public inland lake protection and rehabilitation district, or a town sanitary district may provide an exemption from the prohibition in subd. 1.
or may substitute a lesser number of feet.
This paragraph does not affect any of the following:
The authority of a local governmental unit specified in subd. 2.
to enact more restrictive ordinances under s. 30.77
No person may operate a personal watercraft at a speed in excess of slow-no-wake within 200 feet of the shoreline of any lake.
No person may operate a personal watercraft at a speed in excess of slow-no-wake within 100 feet of any other boat.
do not apply to pickup or drop areas that are marked with regulatory markers and that are open to operators of personal watercraft and to persons and motorboats engaged in water skiing or similar activity.
See also s. NR 5.001
, Wis. adm. code.
Accidents and accident reports. 30.67(1)(1)
Duty to render aid.
Insofar as the operator of a boat can do so without serious danger to the operator's boat or to persons on board, the operator of a boat involved in a boating accident shall stop the operator's boat and render to other persons affected thereby such assistance as may be practicable and necessary to save them from or minimize any danger caused by the accident. The operator shall give the operator's name and address and identification of the operator's boat to any person injured and to the owner of any property damaged in the accident.
If a boating accident results in death or injury to any person, the disappearance of any person from a boat under circumstances indicating death or injury, or property damage, every operator of a boat involved in an accident shall, without delay and by the quickest means available, give notice of the accident to a conservation warden or local law enforcement officer and shall file a written report with the department on the form prescribed by it. The department shall promulgate rules necessary to keep accident reporting requirements in conformity with rules adopted by the U.S. coast guard.
If the operator of a boat is physically incapable of making the report required by this subsection and there was another occupant in the boat at the time of the accident capable of making the report the other occupant shall make such report.
In this section:
“Boating accident" means a collision, accident or other casualty involving a boat.
“Injury" means any injury of a physical nature resulting in medical treatment, disability for more than 24 hours or loss of consciousness.
“Total property damage" means the sum total cost of putting the property damaged in the condition it was in before the accident, if repair thereof is practical, and if not practical, the sum total cost of replacing the property.
No report required by this section to be filed with the department shall be used as evidence in any trial, civil or criminal, arising out of an accident, except that the department shall furnish upon demand of any person who has or claims to have made such a report, or upon demand of any court, a certificate showing that a specified accident report has or has not been made to the department solely to prove a compliance or a failure to comply with the requirement that such a report be made.
Transmittal of information to federal and state authorities.
If any request for information available on the basis of reports filed pursuant to this section is duly made by an authorized official or agency of the U.S. government or of the state which registered the boat involved or the state where the accident occurred, the department shall compile and furnish such information in accordance with such request.
Coroners and medical examiners to report; require blood specimen. 30.67(6)(a)
Every coroner or medical examiner shall on or before the 10th day of each month report in writing to the department the death of any person within his or her jurisdiction during the preceding calendar month as the result of an accident involving a boat and the circumstances of the accident.
In cases of death involving a boat in which the person died within 6 hours of the time of the accident, a blood specimen of at least 10 cc. shall be withdrawn from the body of the decedent within 12 hours after his or her death, by the coroner or medical examiner or by a physician so designated by the coroner or medical examiner or by a qualified person at the direction of the physician. All funeral directors, as defined in s. 445.01 (5)
, shall obtain a release from the coroner or medical examiner prior to proceeding with embalming any body coming under the scope of this section. The blood so drawn shall be forwarded to a laboratory approved by the state health officer for analysis of the alcoholic content of the blood specimen. The coroner or medical examiner causing the blood to be withdrawn shall be notified of the results of each analysis made and shall forward the results of each analysis to the state health officer. The state health officer shall keep a record of all examinations to be used for statistical purposes only. The cumulative results of the examinations, without identifying the individuals involved, shall be disseminated and made public by the state health officer. The department shall reimburse coroners and medical examiners for the costs incurred in submitting reports and taking blood specimens and laboratories for the costs incurred in analyzing blood specimens under this section.
See also s. NR 5.08
, Wis. adm. code.
Distress signal flag.
The display on a boat or by a person of an orange flag approximately 18 by 30 inches in size shall indicate that such boat or person is in need of help.
Insofar as is possible without serious danger to the operator's boat or persons on board, the operator of a boat observing a distress signal shall render to the boat or person displaying the signal such assistance as may be practicable and necessary to save the boat or person or to minimize any danger to them.
No person shall display a flag like that described in sub. (1)
unless such person is in need of assistance to prevent bodily injury or destruction of property.
History: 1991 a. 316
Boating safety certificates; requirements; exemptions; operation by minors. 30.678(1)(1)
Motorboats other than personal watercraft. 30.678(1)(a)
No person under 10 years of age may operate a motorboat.
No person who is at least 10 years of age but under 12 years of age may operate a motorboat unless he or she is accompanied in the motorboat by a parent or guardian or by a person who is at least 18 years of age and who is designated by a parent or guardian and the parent, guardian, or designated adult holds a valid boating safety certificate issued under s. 30.74 (1) (a)
or a valid boating safety certificate that is honored under s. 30.74 (1) (c)
or was born before January 1, 1989.