Education classes are available across the state during March and April

There’s more to preparing for the boating season than just getting the boat ready. Kansas boaters can help ensure the safety of themselves and their passengers by completing a boater education course. Since many insurance providers offer discounts for boater education certificate holders, they may also save money on boat or PWC insurance premiums.

The Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) is offering boater education classes in communities around the state through March and April. Following is a list of scheduled classes, with links for more information:

Boating education courses are organized and conducted by volunteer instructors in many communities across the state. To maintain U.S. Coast Guard recognition, the state’s course must be a minimum of eight hours in length. The course covers navigation, trailer usage, equipment requirements, personal watercraft, safety tips, drug and alcohol impairment, self-rescue and marine theft.

A free home study course is also available by calling KDWP at (620) 672-5911 ext. 170, or by sending an email request. An internet course is available, for a $15 fee.

Any person born on or after January 1, 1989 must complete an approved boater safety education course in order to operate a motorboat or sailboat on public waters in Kansas. This requirement does not apply to a person under the direct supervision of a person over 17 years of age who either possesses a certificate of completion of an approved boater safety education course, or is legally exempt from the requirement. Boating safety courses that are approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) and recognized by the United Sates Coast Guard meet these educational requirements. Nonresidents who boat in Kansas must comply with the education requirements. All states provide a NASBLA approved course which meets Kansas boater education requirements.