Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (R-Merrick) announced that legislation he cosponsored to strengthen New York’s boating safety laws has been signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo. The law will require individuals to obtain a boating safety certificate before operating a vessel.
“Individuals should learn basic safety procedures, navigation, and the rules of the water before operating a powerful motor vehicle which can kill or seriously injure someone. Enacting this law is a step in the right direction which will make our waterways safer for everyone. I applaud Governor Cuomo for signing this legislation,” said Senator Fuschillo, Chairman of the Senate’s Transportation Committee.
The new law will require anyone born on or after May 1, 1996 to have a boating safety certificate in order to operate a boat unsupervised.
According to the U.S. Coast Guard’s 2012 Recreation Boating Statistics, of all operators involved in fatal boating crashes nationwide in 2012 where it could be determined whether they received boating safety training, 73 percent had no boating safety education.
There were 875 boating accidents in New York State between 2008 and 2011, which resulted in 95 fatalities and 500 injuries, according to the New York State Office of Parks Recreation, and Historic Preservation’s 2011 Recreational Boating Report.
The law takes effect on May 1, 2014.