Recreational Boater Education

United States Power Squadron Classes

The American Boating Course is a two (2) day course, usually held on Saturdays, and covers the following information:

  1. INTRODUCTION TO BOATING -- types of boats; different uses of boats; outboard, stern-drive, and inboard engines; jet drives.
  2. BOATING LAWS -- boat registration; hull identification number; required safety equipment; operating safely and reporting accidents; protecting the marine environment; Federal boating laws; and PWCs.
  3. PERSONAL SAFETY EQUIPMENT -- personal flotation devices ("life jackets"); fire extinguishers; sound-producing devices; visual-distress signals; first aid kit; anchor; safety equipment and PWC.
  4. SAFE BOAT HANDLING -- bow riding; substance abuse; entering, loading, and trimming a boat; fueling portable and permanent tanks; steering with a tiller and a wheel; docking and mooring; knots; filing a float plan; checking equipment, fuel, weather, and tide; using charts; choosing and using an anchor; safe PWC handling.
  5. NAVIGATION -- the U.S. Aids to Navigation system; types of buoys and beacons; navigation rules; avoiding collisions; sound signals; PWX "tunnel vision."
  6. BOATING PROBLEMS -- hypothermia; boating accidents and rescues; capsizing; running aground; emergency radio calls; engine problems; boating problems and PWC.
  7. TRAILERING, STORING, AND PROTECTING YOUR BOAT -- types of trailers; trailer brakes, lights, hitches, tires, and bearings; loading, balancing, and towing a trailer; towing (and backing) a trailer; boat launching and retrieving; boat storage and theft protection; launching, retrieving, and storing a PWC.
  8. HUNTING AND FISHING, WATERSKIING, AND RIVER BOATING -- carrying hunting gear and weapons in a boat; fishing from a boat; waterskiing safety guidelines and hand signals; waterskiing with a PWC; navigating rivers.


Squadron Boating Course

The Squadron Boating Course is an eight (8) week course, held on Tuesday nights, and covers the following information:

  1. You are the Skipper! What would you do?
  2. Boat Terms & Types
  3. Marine Radiotelephone
  4. Introduction to Knots and Lines
  5. Charts and Aids to Navigation
  6. Piloting - Plotting a course, using the mariner's compass, figuring your Distance-Speed-Time and determining your position on the face of the earth.
  7. Boat Handling
  8. Government and Louisiana Regulations
  9. Navigation Rules of the Road
  10. What to do in Adverse Conditions
  11. Trailering
  12. Personal Watercraft Operations

More information is available at or phone P/C Nolan F. Haro, Sr., SN VE at 504-338-Fish.