If you want to enjoy the many waterways in Louisiana, then you need to understand the boating laws. According to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, there are some restrictions and requirements in place to ensure you are safe when boating. This starts with a requirement for everyone operating a motorboat of at least 10 horsepower who was born after the first day in 1984 to take and successfully complete a boating education course. You must also carry proof that you passed the course with you when you are boating.
There are also lighting requirements. These depend on the type of vessel you are operating. The size, what you are doing onboard and where you are boating dictate lighting requirements. It is your responsibility to ensure you meet all requirements before heading out on the water.
Certain vessels may also be required to have a fire extinguisher on board. Again, this is dependent on the type of vessel and motor. You should always check the law before taking your boat out to see if you need a fire extinguisher.
Life jackets are another important requirement. In general, on recreational boats, anyone under 16 has to wear a life jacket. Everyone is required to wear one on a hand tiller outboard motor vessel under 16 feet or in kayaks, pirogues, personal watercrafts or canoes.
In regards to personal watercraft, it is important to note that they cannot be operated by anyone under the age of 16. They also cannot be used after sunset or before sunrise. This information is for education and is not legal advice.