The U.S. Coast Guard is reauthorized each year in an annual bill in which some changes may be introduced.The 2018 USCG reauthorization bill as passed requires engine cut off switches (kill switches to prevent the Circle of Death) be installed in most recreational power boats less than 26 feet in length.
The 2019 USCG reauthorization bill as it has passed the House (HR 3409) required mandatory kill switch wear on recreational power boats less than 26 feet in length when underway if a kill switch is present.
Per the National Marine Manufacturer’s Association (NMMA) the bill would also “grant the Coast Guard “equivalency” authority, allowing the Coast Guard to streamline approval of the recreational boating industry construction standards and new technologies, while maintaining the highest level of safety.”
Currently, and historically USCG requirements pertaining to boat building and boating safety that are codified into Federal Regulations are sometimes dated (old and no longer represent current practices), plus they may not specially allow the use of more modern technologies that have since become available. It takes considerable effort and time to change Federal Regulations. Plus in the current environment it has become even more challenging. It sounds like this part of the legislation may help with these problems.
This bill will still have to pass through the Senate, likely require being resolved between the two houses, and be signed by the President of the United States. Read More →