Boater education class

Submitted by the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary

The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary is offering a free Washington State Basic Boater Education Course on San Juan Island. The two-day class will be held on April 4 and April 11, at Skagit Valley College, San Juan Center. The classes will be held from 6–9 p.m. Pre-registration is required, and the class is free.

Anyone wishing to learn or share their safe boating skills as well as review our local boating regulations is invited to attend. Upon successful completion of the course, attendees may submit a copy of their individual Certificate of Accomplishment with $10 for the issuance of a Boater Education Card by the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission.

All Washington state residents must carry a Boater Education Card while on the water and operating a power-boat greater than 15 horsepower. This includes people over 12 years of age and applies to anyone who was born after Jan. 1, 1955.

Anyone can take this course online. However, by taking the class in person, boaters share experiences and discover new aspects of boating. The in-person class provides attendees an opportunity to explore and understand the specific challenges of boating in the Salish Sea.

If you plan on boating in jurisdictions outside of the state of Washington, you are encouraged to determine what the state, territory or nation’s boater education and competency requirements are prior to getting underway.