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russlars
03-14-2008, 09:40 PM
Washington State is now requiring a boater safety education course. I won't actually need it for a few years, but my teenagers need it for this year. Has anyone taken one of these courses yet? The one I am looking at is an online course. Here is the link: http://www.boat-ed.com/wa/index.htm How much time does this actually take and how painful is it? I don't think the kids are excited about spending hours online to take this course. I noticed that the classroom options are either a full day, or two evenings. What are your expriences with this?

JohnE
03-14-2008, 09:45 PM
I did my NH safety course online. It was not bad. Took maybe an hour to read through their state specific regulations and a half hour for the test. They have since changed to making you take a written test at an approved site, so take advantage of the internet certification if it is possible. Funny, now that I think of it, my wife and 2 of our friends took the online new year's eve '06 since as of 1/1/07 internet testing was going to be abandoned.:D

cbryan70
03-14-2008, 09:57 PM
I have sat through a few of these classes. In illinois at least they are just slow moving and ALOT of slides. In my experience hosting them the guys running the show really wont let anyone fail they will help them with test questions and guide them in the correct direction

JohnE
03-14-2008, 10:01 PM
I have sat through a few of these classes. In illinois at least they are just slow moving and ALOT of slides. In my experience hosting them the guys running the show really wont let anyone fail they will help them with test questions and guide them in the correct direction

And that alone makes them more aware than half the yahoos on the water.

The NH certification tested you on a bunch of useless information, but also on some that was necessary.

JohnE
03-14-2008, 10:02 PM
I have sat through a few of these classes. In illinois at least they are just slow moving and ALOT of slides. In my experience hosting them the guys running the show really wont let anyone fail they will help them with test questions and guide them in the correct direction

And that alone makes them more aware than half the yahoos on the water.

The NH certification tested you on a bunch of useless information, but also on some that was necessary.

trickskier
03-14-2008, 10:03 PM
My entire family has gone through the course in FL. My kids can take the boat out legally by themselves now.

JohnE
03-14-2008, 10:06 PM
My entire family has gone through the course in FL. My kids can take the boat out legally by themselves now.

But I'd bet they'd be fine without the course - since they had a good teacher. By the same token, I doubt you'd let them take the boat alone if they only had the safety course without your guidance. On a lot of levels, the course is a farce...

trickskier
03-14-2008, 10:12 PM
But I'd bet they'd be fine without the course - since they had a good teacher. By the same token, I doubt you'd let them take the boat alone if they only had the safety course without your guidance. On a lot of levels, the course is a farce...
Thanks John, You know me pretty well. My kids know that a boat is not a toy. They enjoy and respect being on the water.

whitedog
03-14-2008, 10:17 PM
Hey guys, don't diss boaters safty, I'll agree the online course is some what lame. Take the time to sit through a local class. Most of the instructors are expierenced boaters. If the local power squardern offers a class its better than most offered by the state agencies. A lot of the info seem usless you find yourself on the ICW or the Mississipp, Ohio or Great lakes tributaries where international makring systems apply.

fintek9
03-14-2008, 11:07 PM
My kids got to take a certification class in middle school, The teacher is a guy that I went to school with that had his FIL and freinds In FILs boat that somehow did something on lake Michigan killing one of the freinds on board! ....So he now gives boating classes to students. Real cool on his part. My kids also know a boat is not a toy so now every time they ask to take the boat out I feel real comfortable on saying NO! If I had a Vette sitting in the garage just cause you can drive you still couldn't take that either. I may trust you but Pappas not stupid:uglyhamme:


Some day ...Maybe....

....probably not.....Their 18...:D

LKNMC
03-14-2008, 11:45 PM
I took mine when I was 12 before NC changed the law to 14

sand2snow22
03-15-2008, 12:00 AM
We have it in Oregon, you get a card like a driver's license. It was easy, especially if you have two browsers open at the same time!! :D

ULMboarder
03-15-2008, 12:39 AM
i took the one here in louisiana. my birthday missed the date to not have to have it by 6 days. And since my father is a boat dealer and I have been around boats my whole life.....i thought the course was absolutely stupid. The one here is 90% pointless to the average boater. everything was either about jet skis or navigation. the stuff that actually pertains to the normal is all about what you have to have to be legal and what the green and red lights mean. everything else was pointless.

Now i know every one else wont have this experinence but the class i took was the first class that the Wildlife and Fisheries taught in Monroe. But these guys had no clue what was goin on. they were acutally askin me questions about some of the boats. but this is louisiana and it seems like every irrational redneck is a game warden.

erkoehler
03-15-2008, 12:39 AM
Do any of these REQUIRED courses make you spend time on the water? If not, what is the point of the course?

Could you learn to drive a car 100% effectively in the classroom? :(

fintek9
03-15-2008, 12:48 AM
Do any of these REQUIRED courses make you spend time on the water? If not, what is the point of the course?

Could you learn to drive a car 100% effectively in the classroom? :(I thought this myself back then! got them out on the bass boat for them to show me wait they learned and get the feel for what they learned. lucky we're a boating family. Some kids I know don't have a boat.... but they have a certificate to do so:confused:

erkoehler
03-15-2008, 12:50 AM
I thought this myself back then! got them out on the bass boat for them to show me wait they learned and get the feel for what they learned. lucky we're a boating family. Some kids I know don't have a boat.... but they have a certificate to do so:confused:


Just as I assumed....makes absolutely no sense!

Doug G
03-15-2008, 07:48 AM
Son and I did it online a couple years ago. Alot of silly information but he did learn about lights at night, red vs green, etc.. and he was proud as hell when pulled over by a fish copy thinking he wouldn't have it and he drops the card on em. Fish cop did a little q&a with my son and he got it all right so he learned something. Should be done for first timers imho. don't ask me what the penalty is for BUI though .

WTRSK1R
03-15-2008, 09:18 AM
I took the local Pwr Sqd class when I got my first MC back in '92 mostly because I got an insurance discount from the carrier I had back then, but I will admidt I learned a few things. Most of the stuff I learned was totally irrelevant for an inland boater, and had more purpose if you were on the Great Lakes or the Intercoastal. However, that being said, I just signed both my son and daughter up for a local course so that they will meet the legal requirement for minors. Last year, my son tried to do the online version and could not take the hours in front of the computer. His attention span could not take the slow pace of the course. Hopefully this does not happen with the in person version. :o

lazypiper
03-15-2008, 10:15 AM
I'm also taking the Power Squadron course and their is a ton of things I'm learning. Most of it is useless to me (lots of sailboat stuff), but if one safety thing helps me one day then I guess its worth it. If your just looking for a card to show a cop then thats what you will get out of it. One example: your kids get in trouble set a flare for help and maybe set the boat on fire because they didn't tie it to a boat hook or something. I don't think their a bad thing. Just maybe not as useful on inland waters. BTW this course is like 10 weeks 2 hours EVERY Monday:( . That really sucks.

ski_king
03-15-2008, 10:43 AM
My entire family took the PA test 6 years ago. My youngest daughter was 11 at the time and got her card, but she had to wait until she was 12 to be legal.
They are 17 and 20 now and still havn't passed the dad test. They are good drivers and pull me all the time, but I don't let them take the boat out alone. I guess I am somewhat anal and posessive of my boat.

ski_king
03-15-2008, 10:43 AM
My entire family took the PA test 6 years ago. My youngest daughter was 11 at the time and got her card, but she had to wait until she was 12 to be legal.
They are 17 and 20 now and still havn't passed the dad test. They are good drivers and pull me all the time, but I don't let them take the boat out alone. I guess I am somewhat anal and posessive of my boat.

JohnnyB
03-15-2008, 11:07 AM
I will agree with others that found the courses taught by the local Power Squadron to be very good. Let's face it, one of the things they do is review the laws which is good for all the newbies to hear. The other thing they cover is a lot of the safety aspects of operating and maintaining a boat as well as the aspects of keeping passengers safe and avoiding accidents.

I grew up around boats and took it when I was 12 and still remember some of the things they talked about.

We've required the nieces and nephews who want to operate our boats to take it, regardless of age. I've sat in on some of their courses from time-to-time and do find value in them. It is a couple of nights or one long day well spent in my opinion.....unfortunately, the instructors make the course and there is lots of variability class-to-class.

ProTour X9
03-15-2008, 11:32 AM
We had a deputy sheriff come in our class for an hour a day for a week, we took the test the last day.

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-15-2008, 12:09 PM
I have sat through a few of these classes. In illinois at least they are just slow moving and ALOT of slides. In my experience hosting them the guys running the show really wont let anyone fail they will help them with test questions and guide them in the correct direction
your not an Illinois Nazi are you? Cuz Steve hates Illinois Nazi's.

03 35th Anniversary
03-15-2008, 12:17 PM
your not an Illinois Nazi are you? Cuz Steve hates Illinois Nazi's.But he is all about Hillary

Maristar210
03-15-2008, 01:57 PM
your not an Illinois Nazi are you? Cuz Steve hates Illinois Nazi's.


"Damn Illinois Nazi's"