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Boat/Vessel License Requirements

Statewide licensing of boat operators began in all Alabama counties July 17, 1997 under the Boating Safety Reform Act. You must be at least 12 years of age to operate a motorized vessel on Alabama's waterways. You also must be licensed. A written examination is required for applicants, except those who were 40 or older on April 28, 1994, or those who have successfully completed boating courses given by the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, the U.S. Power Squadron or the Alabama Marine Police "Boating Basics" course. The vessel class "V" must be added to your license if you intend to operate a motorized vessel. This legislation, which also provides sanctions for drunken driving and other offenses, has been hailed as the toughest boating safety act in the country.

Applicants may apply and be tested as necessary at Department of Public Safety Driver License Offices across the state.

* Under age 14, Vessel Learner License only. Must be accompanied by a Vessel Licensed driver that is 21 years old or older.

Driver License Division

Major Terry Chapman
Division Chief

Alabama Department of Public Safety
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