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2018 Minnesota Statutes

86B.311 GENERAL RULES FOR OPERATION.

Subdivision 1.Safe operation.

A person may not operate or allow the operation of a watercraft or use a device relating to the use of the watercraft:

(1) in a careless or heedless manner in disregard of the rights or safety of others;

(2) in a reckless or grossly negligent manner that causes personal injury to another or damage to the property of another;

(3) upon the waters of this state without the equipment required by this chapter and the rules adopted under this chapter; or

(4) that is loaded with passengers or cargo beyond the watercraft's safe carrying capacity or is equipped with a motor or other propulsion machinery beyond the watercraft's safe power capacity.

Subd. 2.Obstructing navigation.

A person may not operate a watercraft in a manner that obstructs or tends to obstruct normal and ordinary navigation on the waters of this state.

Subd. 3.Unauthorized mooring.

A person may not moor, attach, or hold in any manner a watercraft to a buoy or any other marking device or guide placed in the waters of this state pursuant to lawful authority. This subdivision does not apply to a mooring buoy.

Subd. 4.Swimming or bathing areas.

A person may not operate a watercraft within a water area that has been marked off or set aside as a swimming or bathing area as prescribed by the commissioner's rules.

Subd. 5.Riding on gunwales or decking.

A person may not ride or sit and a person may not operate a motorboat while a person is riding or sitting on (i) the starboard or port gunwales; (ii) the decking over the bow, sides, or stern; or (iii) the transom, of a motorboat while underway unless the motorboat is provided with adequate guards or railing to prevent passengers from falling overboard.

Subd. 6.Law enforcement watercraft displaying emergency lights.

When approaching and passing a law enforcement watercraft with its emergency lights activated, the operator of a watercraft must safely move the watercraft away from the law enforcement watercraft and maintain a slow-no wake speed while within 150 feet of the law enforcement watercraft.

700 State Office Building, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155 ♦ Phone: (651) 296-2868 ♦ TTY: 1-800-627-3529 ♦ Fax: (651) 296-0569