Administrative Code

Creating a Report: Check the sections you'd like to appear in the report, then use the "Create Report" button at the bottom of the page to generate your report. Once the report is generated you'll then have the option to download it as a pdf, print or email the report.

Virginia Administrative Code
Title 4. Conservation and Natural Resources
Agency 15. Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
Chapter 440. Watercraft: Commercial Vessel Safety Equipment Requirements
6/4/2020

4VAC15-440-20. Lifesaving Equipment Required.

A. It shall be unlawful to operate a vessel to which this chapter applies unless it meets the requirements of this section.

B. Each vessel not carrying passengers for hire less than 40 feet in length must have at least one U.S. Coast Guard approved life preserver (Type I PFD), buoyant vest (Type II PFD), or marine buoyant device intended to be worn (Type III PFD), of a suitable size for each person on board. Kapok and fibrous glass life preservers that do not have plastic-covered pad inserts as required by the U.S. Coast Guard are not acceptable as equipment required by this subsection.

C. Each vessel carrying passengers for hire and each vessel 40 feet in length or longer not carrying passengers for hire must have at least one approved (Type I PFD) life preserver of a suitable size for each person on board. Kapok and fibrous glass life preservers that do not have plastic-covered pad inserts as required by the U.S. Coast Guard are not acceptable as equipment required by this subsection.

D. In addition to the equipment required by subsections B or C of this section, each vessel 26 feet in length or longer must have at least one approved ring life buoy, constructed in accordance with requirements of the U.S. Coast Guard.

E. Each vessel not carrying passengers for hire may substitute an immersion suit for a life preserver, buoyant vest, or marine buoyant device required under subsection B or C of this section. Each immersion suit carried in accordance with this subsection must be of a type approved by the U.S. Coast Guard.

F. On each vessel, regardless of length and regardless of whether carrying passengers for hire, an approved commercial hybrid PFD may be substituted for a life preserver, buoyant vest, or marine buoyant device required under subsection B or C of this section if it is:

1. Used in accordance with the conditions marked on the PFD and in the owner's manual;

2. Labeled for use on commercial vessels; and

3. In the case of a Type V commercial hybrid PFD, worn when the vessel is underway and the intended wearer is not within an enclosed space.

Statutory Authority

§§ 29.1-501, 29.1-502, 29.1-701, and 29.1-735 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 19, Issue 05, eff. January 1, 2003.

Website addresses provided in the Virginia Administrative Code to documents incorporated by reference are for the reader's convenience only, may not necessarily be active or current, and should not be relied upon. To ensure the information incorporated by reference is accurate, the reader is encouraged to use the source document described in the regulation.

As a service to the public, the Virginia Administrative Code is provided online by the Virginia General Assembly. We are unable to answer legal questions or respond to requests for legal advice, including application of law to specific fact. To understand and protect your legal rights, you should consult an attorney.