Boating Navigation Rules

Official boating navigation rules and information on right-of-way that all boaters need to know!

Ohio’s Navigation Rules and Boat Muffler Requirements

Ohio’s navigation rules are the traffic laws of the waterways and are legally binding for boat operators. These rules dictate the operator’s course of action for avoiding collisions and include maneuvering, lighting, and sound signal requirements. Responsibility Nothing in Ohio’s Navigation Rules rules shall exonerate any vessel, operators, owner, master or crew from the consequences […]

Pennsylvania’s Locks and Dams

Pennsylvania’s locks and dams are located on the Monongahela, Allegheny and Ohio rivers, in and near Pittsburgh. Pennsylvania’s locks and dams are built and maintained by the U.S Army Corps of Engineers, and provide a means for passing vessels to navigate through the dams. Entering and Exiting Pennsylvania’s Locks When entering or exiting a lock […]

Boating in Rivers, Canals, and Shipping Lanes

River Navigation Boating in rivers is different than operating on an open waterway. Boating in rivers presents its own unique hazards and conditions. Some rivers may exhibit strong currents, which can affect your boat’s steering and the predictability of your craft. The water level in a river may also rise or lower more rapidly than […]

Boat Navigation at Night

Boat Navigation at Night: Head-on Approach If you meet a vessel and see a green, red and white light, you are approaching another power-driven vessel head-on. In this situation neither vessel has the right-of-way. Both operators must take early and substantial action to steer well clear of the other vessel. Both operators should reduce their speed and steer […]

Lock Navigation and Boating in Unique Waterways

Lock Navigation Lock navigation can be challening. It’s important to follow instructions and be confident while navigating a lock. Always listen to the lock master and control your speed. A lock is a physical structure of gates that enables vessels to travel between two bodies of water that are of different elevations. Boats enter the […]

Boat Navigation and Right of Way

The Navigation Rules: Disclaimer The navigation rules contained in this course summarize basic navigation rules for which a boat operator is responsible on inland waterways. Additional and much more in-depth rules apply regarding various types of waterways, such as International Waters and Western Rivers, and operation in relation to commercial boats and other watercraft. It’s […]

Boat Navigation at Night in the USA

Boat Navigation in Restricted Visibility Boat navigation at night, or during periods of reduced visibility can be dangerous. Boaters should take additional care when operating at night or during periods of restricted visibility, such as darkness, fog or heavy rain. If you hear a sound signal during restricted visibility, you should reduce your speed in […]

Boat Navigation in Canada

Boat Navigation and Right of Way It’s important to know and understand boat navigation and right of way rules in Canada. This includes what actions to take when approaching another boat when you’re out on the water, just like understanding the rules of the road. They are important in helping reduce the risk of collision and […]


Boating Collision Regulations An important part of being a smart boater is realizing your right-of-way when you’re out on the water. The Collision Regulations govern the rules that prevent collisions on oceans and inland waterways. These rules apply to all vessels and to all waters in Canada. The Collision Regulations govern the following: Navigation Right-of-way rules Look-out rules Boater Responsibilities […]