Personal watercraft riders and boaters must share the waterways with other boaters, fishermen, swimmers, surfers, and skiers. We therefore all have a responsibility to respect each other’s rights to safe enjoyment of the water.
A Safe Boating Course will give you the skills you need to be a safe and courteous Sea-Doo watercraft or boat owner.
Right of Way
Follow these basic guidelines for safe, courteous fun on the water:
- Sailboats, commercial vessels, and fishing vessels always have the right of way.
- Stay to the right of other vessels when approaching an oncoming craft, so that it passes on your left side.
- When overtaking another boat or watercraft, pass on the right or left, but stay clear.
- If you are about to cross paths with another boat or watercraft, the craft on the right side has the right of way.
Passing Port to Port
When approaching another vessel to your port (left), you can proceed normally.
Passing Starboard to Starboard
When approaching another vessel to your starboard (right), you can proceed normally.
Meeting Head to Head
When approaching a boat or watercraft head on, always keep to the starboard (right).
Traffic on the water. Constantly check for other water enthusiasts, especially near you, and know where they're heading before you make a turn or cross a wake.
Wave or wake jumping. If your course takes you across the wake of another boat, make sure your visibility is not obstructed by that boat. Stay far enough behind it so that you can see if other traffic is coming your way.
Operating speed. Follow local regulations regarding speed limits, whether posted or not. In congested areas, lower your speed.
Launch Ramp Etiquette
Be considerate and efficient when launching your personal watercraft or boat. Prepare your gear beforehand, and perform all safety checks before you get into the water. Launch quietly and in a timely manner.
Be considerate of waterfront property owners and others near and on the water. Excessive noise from a poorly maintained or modified exhaust system disturbs others and is illegal in many areas.
Respect ecologically sensitive areas. Do not spill fuel or oil, and do not leave litter or other pollutants where they don't belong. Be sensitive to marine life – the water is their home.
Prior to picking up your brand new Sea-Doo watercraft, make sure you are comfortable trailering it.
The first step is to make sure you have the right hitch on your tow vehicle. Select a Class I or II hitch, depending on which Sea-Doo model you choose. Check with your BRP dealer for the correct hitch. An empty parking lot is a great place to learn to trailer your new boat. Practice towing first, as you will want to get used to the added length, weight, and braking of the vehicle/trailer combination.
Once you feel comfortable with this phase you should be ready to practice backing up. Use one of the parking spaces as a make-believe launch ramp, and practice putting the trailer between the lines from different angles. Before you know it, you will quickly get used to steering in the opposite direction of where you want the trailer to go, and avoid over-steering. A method that many people feel comfortable with is putting your steering hand at the bottom of the wheel and moving your hand to the right to turn the trailer to the right and vice-versa.
Your first attempt may end up resembling a snake, but don't worry – we all had to learn and even the experts don't always get it right the first time.
When you're ready for your first launch be sure to check the ramp for obstacles or hazards.
Have your boat ready before you hit the ramp - tie downs removed, drain plugs in, all required equipment on board, blower activated. At the water's edge, unhook the winch strap, safety chain, and light wire connector. Upon returning, follow the steps in reverse. Always be aware that you are towing, as you will want to take wider turns to avoid curbs and vehicles around town.
Don't be afraid to ask your Sea-Doo dealer for some trailering tips. They are in business to help you.
So what are you waiting for? Go launch your watercraft and get your share of Sea-Doo fun!