Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: New Orleans
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I expect the Coast Guard will leave the question of licensing recreational boat operators to each individual state. No way the CG wants to take this on as a federal responsibility, they have enough trouble keeping up with licensing the commercial operators (takes forever to renew a license, for example)
So some states will do it, some won't. Is it a good idea? Depends on your viewpoint. In Europe, you need a license to walk down the street.
In the US, we have more of a "lone cowboy" tradition--anyone is free to try anything, we have less regulation and let Darwin sort out the unregulated stuff.
Eventually we'll see how the various state regimes (or lack thereof) compare in casualty and accident rates. Me? when I shoved my kid off the dock in a small sailboat to see how he'd do with what I'd taught him, I wasn't really welcoming any state license requirement for him, or me for that matter. I grew up sailing, took Power Squadron when I was 14 (got no certificate, you had to be 16). There's a lot of free education out there. I'd rather not make it mandatory.
Last edited by nolatom; 06-20-2007 at 11:42 AM.