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Lifeguards hold boating safety demonstration ahead of Spring break

Police and lifeguards put out a list of do’s and don’ts for what to while you’re on the water.

First responders are on high alert with summer on the way. On Thursday morning they held a briefing to discuss boating safety and illegal vessel rental recommendations. The city says they will be stepping up patrols as they are expecting more visitors starting this weekend.

Lifeguards released a fact sheet with some do’s and dont’s that were covered.

  • Minimum age
    • No person under 16 years of age may operate a boat with a motor of more than 15 horsepower, except for a sailboat that does not exceed 30 feet in length or a dinghy used directly between a moored boat and the shore or between two moored boats. The law allows children 12–15 years of age to operate boats with a motor of more than 15 horsepower or sailboats over 30 feet if supervised on board by an adult at least 18 years of age.
  • General vessel speed
    • No person may operate a vessel at a speed greater than five miles per hour within 100 feet of a swimmer or surfer.
  • Ocean vessel speed
    • No person may operate a vessel in excess of five miles per hour within 1,000 feet of the oceanfront coastline of the City of San Diego. Separate boating regulations apply to Mission Bay.
  • Illegal vessel rental
    • SDFD lifeguards have seen an increase in those who are renting vessels illegally on Mission Bay. Only licensed lessees may rent vessels for use on Mission Bay. These are brick and mortar businesses that have registered with the City of San Diego and have the appropriate business license, insurance and proof of maintenance and safety compliance. Please be aware that if you rent a vessel from someone operating out of their car or their home, you are illegally renting a vessel and can be cited under SD Municipal Code 63.20.20. In addition, if you are operating an illegally rented vessel and are involved in a boating collision that causes injury, you may be liable for medical and other costs. 

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