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Navigation Law

Consolidated Laws of New York's NAV code

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NYS Navigation Law - Vessels

PLEASURE VESSELS

Section Description
71-D Liveries; safety regulations; penalty.
72 Operation of pleasure vessels on Round Island lake, Orange county.
72-A Operation of vessels on the inland waters of Chautauqua county.
73 Towing of persons.
73-A Regulations of personal watercraft and specialty prop-craft.
  S 71-D. Liveries;  safety  regulations; penalty. 1. No livery operator
  shall knowingly lease, hire or rent a vessel to any person:
    (a) When the number of persons  using  the  vessel  shall  exceed  the
  number  deemed  to  constitute  a  maximum  safety load for said vessel,
  according to its capacity plate or industry-accepted standards.
    (b) When the manufacturer's rated horsepower of the motor exceeds  the
  capacity of the vessel, making the vessel unsafe to operate.
    (c)  When  the  vessel  does not contain the equipment required by its
  respective class, as provided by section forty.
    1-a. Notwithstanding subdivision one of  section  forty-nine  of  this
  article,  a  livery  may  lease,  hire  or rent a mechanically propelled
  vessel, except a personal water craft or  specialty  prop  craft,  to  a
  person who is not the holder of a boating safety certificate if:
    (a) the person is eighteen years or older;
    (b) the operator of such livery or his or her designated agent, is the
  holder  of a boating safety certificate, and prior to permitting the use
  by such person of the vessel explains and demonstrates to such person by
  video or actual in water demonstration the operation of such vessel, and
  the use and location of such vessel's safety equipment;
    (c) such person, after receiving  the  explanation  and  demonstration
  required  pursuant to paragraph (b) of this subdivision, demonstrates to
  the livery operator  or  the  livery  operator's  designated  agent  the
  ability to operate such vessel and use the applicable safety equipment;
    (d)  such  person  presents genuine proof of identification and age to
  the livery operator;
    (e) the livery operator or the livery operator's designated agent,  at
  the  time of the leasing, hiring, or renting, records the name, address,
  and age of the operator of the leased,  hired  or  rented  vessel.  Such
  records shall be maintained for a period of not less than one year; and
    (f) the vessel is not leased, hired or rented to the same person for a
  period exceeding sixty days.
    2. Any person convicted of violating this section shall be guilty of a
  violation  punishable  by  a  fine of not less than twenty-five nor more
  than one hundred dollars.

  S 72. Operation  of  pleasure  vessels  on  Round  Island lake, Orange
  county. Pleasure vessels as  defined  in  this  chapter,  equipped  with
  detachable  outboard  motors or permanent inboard motors, except vessels
  propelled by electric motors of not over  one-fourth  rated  horsepower,
  shall  not  be  operated at any time on the waters of Round Island lake,
  Orange county.

  S 72-A. Operation  of  vessels  on  the  inland  waters  of Chautauqua
  county. No water craft shall pass the stern of a  boat  being  used  for
  trolling  less  than two hundred feet from the stern of such boat on the
  inland lakes of Chautauqua county.

  S 73. Towing  of  persons.  1.  No  person shall operate a vessel for
  towing a person unless there is upon such vessel a  person,  other  than
  the operator, of at least ten years of age, in a position to observe the
  progress of the person being towed.
    2. No person shall be towed or use or operate a vessel to tow a person
  during  the  period  from  sunset to sunrise provided, however, that the
  provisions of this subdivision shall  not  apply  to  a  paid  performer
  engaged in a professional exhibition.
    3.  No  person  shall  be towed by a vessel without wearing a securely
  fastened United States Coast Guard approved  personal  flotation  device
  and  no  person  shall  use  or  operate a vessel to tow a person not in
  compliance with this subdivision; provided, however, that the provisions
  of this subdivision shall not apply to a paid  performer  engaged  in  a
  professional exhibition.
    4.  The  provisions of subdivision one of this section shall not apply
  to a vessel operated or controlled by the person  being  towed  by  such
  vessel,  the design of which makes no provision for carrying an operator
  or observer on board. Such a vessel may not, however, be operated unless
  (a) it is  registered  and  an  assigned  number  permanently  displayed
  thereon  in  accordance  with  sections twenty-two hundred fifty-one and
  twenty-two hundred fifty-four of the vehicle and traffic law; (b) it  is
  equipped  with  an  automatic  shut-off mechanism activated whenever the
  operator is separated from the towing device; (c) it is equipped with  a
  fire  extinguisher  and  flame  arrester  attached to the motor; (d) the
  motor compartment is properly ventilated; (e) all  persons  being  towed
  are  wearing  a  securely  fastened  United  States Coast Guard approved
  personal flotation device at all  times  of  operation;  and  (f)  other
  safety  provisions required by section forty of this article, except the
  requirements of subdivisions two and three thereof relating to  the  use
  of whistles and anchors.
    4-a.  No  person  shall operate or manipulate any vessel or device for
  towing a person in such a way as to cause  such  device  or  any  person
  utilizing  such  device  to collide with or strike any object or person.
  The provisions of this section do not apply to collisions of two or more
  persons or devices being towed behind the same boat  nor  to  collisions
  with  ski  jumps, buoys and similar objects normally used in competitive
  or recreational water skiing.
    5. No person shall operate or manipulate a device for towing a  person
  or  be  towed  in  a  reckless or negligent manner so as to endanger the
  life, limb, or property of any person.
    6. Any person violating any provision of this section shall be  guilty
  of  a  violation  punishable  as set forth in section seventy-three-c of
  this article.
    7. For the purposes of this section: (a) to tow a  person  shall  mean
  the  towing  of a person, including utilizing a device, on the navigable
  waters of the state or any tidewaters bordering on or lying  within  the
  boundaries  of  Nassau  and  Suffolk counties, but shall not include the
  towing of persons in a vessel to which assistance is being rendered; and
  (b) a device shall include, but not be limited to, water skis, a tube, a
  surfboard, a tow rope, an aquaplane, a parasail, or a related device.

  S 73-A. Regulations of personal watercraft and specialty prop-craft.
  1.  Personal watercraft and specialty prop-craft.  a.  No  person  shall
  operate  a  personal  watercraft  or  a specialty prop-craft unless each
  person riding on such vessel  is  wearing  a  securely  fastened  United
  States Coast Guard approved personal flotation device.
    b.  No  person  shall  operate  a  personal  watercraft or a specialty
  prop-craft unless such vessel is  equipped  and  fitted  with  a  United
  States Coast Guard approved device for arresting carburetor backfire.
    c.  No  person  shall  operate  a  personal  watercraft or a specialty
  prop-craft unless such vessel is equipped with:
    (i) at least two ventilators fitted with cowls or their equivalent for
  the purpose of properly and efficiently ventilating the bilges of  every
  engine  and  fuel tank compartment in order to remove any inflammable or
  explosive gases provided, however, if the vessel is so constructed as to
  have the greater portion of the bilges under the engine and  fuel  tanks
  open and exposed to the natural atmosphere at all times such vessel need
  not be required to be fitted with such ventilators; and
    (ii) an efficient sound producing mechanical appliance, except sirens,
  capable  of  producing a blast of two seconds or more in duration and of
  such strength as to be heard plainly for a distance of at least one-half
  mile in still weather; and
    (iii) a fluorescent-orange distress flag which shall be a  minimum  of
  one  foot square or other appropriate United States Coast Guard approved
  visual distress signal.
    d.  Any  person  operating  a  personal  watercraft  or  a   specialty
  prop-craft  equipped  by  the  manufacturer  with  a lanyard type engine
  cut-off switch shall attach such lanyard to his or her person, clothing,
  or personal flotation device as is appropriate for the specific vessel.
    e. No person shall  operate  a  personal  watercraft  or  a  specialty
  prop-craft at any time from sunset to sunrise.
    f.  No  person  shall  operate  a  personal  watercraft or a specialty
  prop-craft within five hundred feet  of  any  designated  bathing  area,
  except in bodies of water where the opposing shoreline is less than five
  hundred  feet  from  such  designated  area and in accordance with speed
  regulations and restrictions as provided by local law or  ordinance  but
  in  no  event  at  a  speed  in  excess of ten miles per hour, provided,
  however, that nothing contained in this subdivision shall  be  construed
  to prohibit the launching of such vessel from designated launching areas
  or sites.
    g.  Every  personal  watercraft  and specialty prop-craft shall at all
  times be operated in a reasonable and prudent  manner.  Maneuvers  which
  unreasonably   or   unnecessarily  endanger  life,  limb,  or  property,
  including, but not limited to,  (i)  weaving  through  congested  vessel
  traffic,  or  (ii)  jumping  the  wake of another vessel unreasonably or
  unnecessarily close to such other vessel or when visibility around  such
  other  vessel  is  obstructed,  or  (iii)  swerving at the last possible
  moment to avoid collision  shall  constitute  reckless  operation  of  a
  vessel, as provided in section forty-five of this article.
    h.  The  provisions  of  this section shall not apply to any performer
  engaged  in  a  professional  exhibition  or  any  person  preparing  to
  participate   or  participating  in  a  regatta,  race,  marine  parade,
  tournament, or exhibition authorized under section thirty-four  of  this
  chapter.
    i.  The  provisions  of this section shall apply to the operation of a
  personal watercraft and a specialty prop-craft on any waterway  or  body
  of  water  located within New York state and not privately owned and any
  part of any body of water adjacent to New  York  state  over  which  the
  state  has  territorial jurisdiction, including all tidewaters bordering
  on and lying within the boundaries of Nassau and Suffolk counties.
    j.  The provisions of section forty of this chapter shall not apply to
  personal watercraft or specialty prop-craft.
    2. Liveries. Notwithstanding the provisions of section  forty-nine  or
  seventy-one-d  of  this  chapter, no livery shall lease, hire, or rent a
  personal watercraft or a specialty prop-craft to any person unless:
    (a) such person is sixteen years of age or older.
    (b) the operator of such livery, or his  designated  agent,  prior  to
  permitting  the  use  by  such  person  of  such  personal watercraft or
  specialty prop-craft, explains and demonstrates to such person by  video
  or  actual  in  water  demonstration  the  operating  procedure  of such
  personal watercraft or specialty prop-craft and the use of such vessel's
  safety equipment;
    (c) such person, after receiving  the  explanation  and  demonstration
  required  pursuant to paragraph (b) of this subdivision, demonstrates to
  such livery operator or to such designated agent the ability to  operate
  such vessel and use the applicable safety equipment;
    (d) such person has presented genuine proof of identification and age;
  and  except  as  provided  in  paragraph  (f)  of  this subdivision, has
  demonstrated compliance with section forty-nine of this article, to such
  livery operator or the livery operator's designated agent prior  to  the
  time of leasing, hiring or renting such vessel;
    (e)  such livery operator or his designated agent, at the time of such
  leasing, hiring or renting, records the name, address  and  age  of  the
  user of the leased, hired or rented vessel, and the model, year, name of
  manufacturer, and state registration or federal documentation numbers of
  the leased, hired or rented vessel. Such records shall be maintained for
  a period of not less than one year; and
    * (f)   notwithstanding  the  provisions  of  paragraph  (d)  of  this
  subdivision and subdivision one-a of section forty-nine of this article,
  a person over eighteen years of age may operate such personal watercraft
  or specialty prop-craft without the  certificate  required  pursuant  to
  section  forty-nine of this article when such operation is restricted by
  the operator of such livery, or the livery operator's designated  agent,
  to  a  specified  area,  no part of which shall be more than twenty-five
  hundred feet from the livery location, or, if removed  from  the  livery
  location,  not  more  than five hundred feet from the livery operator or
  agent assigned by the livery operator to supervise  such  operation  and
  such  personal  watercraft  or  specialty  propcraft and/or the personal
  flotation device of the operator is clearly marked in such a  manner  as
  to  be  distinguishable  by  the  operator  of such livery or the livery
  operator's designated agent within the permitted areas of operation.
    * NB Repealed January 1, 2017
    3. Penalties for violation. (a) Every person convicted of a  violation
  of  this section, other than a conviction for a violation of subdivision
  two of this section, shall for a first conviction thereof be punished by
  a fine of not less than fifty dollars nor more than two hundred dollars;
  for a conviction of a second violation, both  of  which  were  committed
  within  a period of twenty-four months, such person shall be punished by
  a fine of not less than one hundred dollars nor more than  four  hundred
  dollars;  upon  a  conviction of a third or subsequent violation, all of
  which were committed within a period of twenty-four months, such  person
  shall  be  punished  by  a fine of not less than two hundred dollars nor
  more than five hundred dollars and the revocation of the registration of
  the personal watercraft.
    (b) Every person convicted of a violation of subdivision two  of  this
  section  shall  for  a first conviction thereof be punished by a fine of
  not less than one hundred dollars nor more than two hundred dollars; for
  a conviction of a second violation, both of which were committed  within
  a  period of twenty-four months, such person shall be punished by a fine
  of not less than two hundred dollars nor more than four hundred dollars;
  upon  a conviction of a third or subsequent violation, all of which were
  committed within a period of twenty-four months, such  person  shall  be
  punished  by  a fine of not less than four hundred dollars nor more than
  eight hundred dollars.

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