|Area News | Home | Marketplace | Community|
|Paynesville Press - May 11, 2005|
New life jacket law takes effect
A new requirement - for children under age 10 to wear a life jacket while boating on Minnesota waters - was recently passed by the Minnesota Legislature, signed into law by Gov. Tim Pawlenty on Thursday and went into effect on Friday, May 6. |
Called the "Grant Allen Law," the measure was named in memory of the child who drowned after falling out of his father's boat in 2003.
The new law requires that a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket be worn by children younger than age 10 in boats that are underway or otherwise not tied up to a dock or permanent mooring.
There are a few exceptions to the law. Children are not required to wear a life jacket if they are in a boat's enclosed cabin or below decks, or on an anchored boat that is being used as a platform for swimming or diving. Also, children on board commercial or charter vessels with a licensed captain are exempt from the life jacket-wearing requirement.
Boat operators who violate the law are subject to a written warning for the first offense and a petty misdemeanor for a second offense until May 1, 2006, and a petty misdemeanor for any offense on or after May 1, 2006.
For more information, visit the DNR website at www.dnr.state. mn.us or call 1-888-MINNDNR.
Exemptions when in an enclosed cabin or below the top deck on a watercraft; when on an anchored boat that is a platform for swimming or diving; or when aboard a charter (passenger) craft with a licensed captain.
Petty misdemeanor for second or more offense until May 1, 2006;
Petty misdemeanor for any offense after May 1, 2006.
Contact the author at firstname.lastname@example.org Return to News Menu