As a finger lakes boat accident lawyer and boating enthusiast, I try to keep up on boating law developments. Well, there’s a big development coming down the pipes: A bill is sitting on the Governor’s desk that will require all owners and operators of motorized boats (including jet skis) to take a NY State certified boating safety course. The current law says that only those born after May 1, 1996 have to take the boating safety course.
When the proposed new law says “all” operators and owners of boats, it really does mean all, no matter how old, no matter how long they have owned or operated a boat. Are you 93 and been boating for 73 of those years? You still would have to take the course! The new proposed law is called “Brianna’s Law” in honor of Brianna Lieneck, an 11-year-old victim of a boating accident. Most legal experts think the Governor will sign the bill. If so, it will take effect on January 1, 2020. The good news is that the course can be taken online, though it can also be taken in a classroom setting.