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September 12, 2023

When a Water Skier on Florida Waters May Legally Ski

Water skiing intertwines the thrill of rapid motion with a test of equilibrium and the elation of immersion. It is a fun and exciting water sport that is popular in Florida. However, water skiers must follow the law in order to avoid legal repercussions and remain safe. This article will explore when a water skier on florida waters may legally ski and what safety precautions are necessary for this activity.

According to Florida laws, anyone being towed on water skis, surfboards, inner tubes, or other devices must wear a non-inflatable personal flotation device (PFD) approved by the U.S. Coast Guard. This PFD must be properly fitted and fastened. Additionally, water skiing is prohibited between half an hour after sunset and a half hour before sunrise. Passing the towline over another vessel or navigating between the towing vessel and the person being towed is also illegal.

In addition to the PFD requirement, water skiers in Florida must wear a bright orange or red flag that is at least 12 inches by 12 inches in size. This flag alerts other boaters to the presence of a water skier and helps prevent collisions. It is recommended that water skiers establish hand signals with the boat driver ahead of time to ensure clear communication.

Additionally, it is important to be familiar with the area in which you will be water skiing. In Florida, alligators inhabit certain lakes, and they are known to be more active in the spring. It is also crucial to keep in mind that the use of alcohol or drugs while water skiing is against the law. Water skiers who fail to adhere to these or other laws may be subject to fines and other penalties.