PFD Requirements

New Hampshire PFD Requirements

Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs)

Personal Flotation Devices
  • The New Hampshire Marine Patrol (NHMP) requires at least one U.S. Coast Guard approved Type IV PFD (ring buoy OR seat cushion) on all recreational boats in excess of 16 feet in length, in ADDITION to the wearable PFD required for each person onboard all boats. Exceptions to this requirement include the following:
    • Canoes and kayaks
    • Inflatable rafts
    • Sailboards
  • Someone being towed behind a vessel is considered to be onboard.
  • All PWC occupants must be wearing their PFD while underway.
  • Inflatable PFDs are not approved for children nor are they approved for use during high impact sports such as water skiing or operating a PWC.

Children: All boaters or passengers 12 years of age and younger must be wearing their PFD at all times while on any vessel, unless a guard rail is in place that is a minimum of 3 feet in height which will prevent the child from falling overboard.

Education Requirement

All boaters operating a vessel propelled by a motor of 25 hp or greater...

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