WISCONSIN BOATING LAW BASICS DEPT. OF NATURAL RESOURCES
Reckless & Negligent Operation:
No person shall operate any vessel or manipulate water skis or similar towed devices in a reckless or negligent manner. The failure to exercise the degree of care necessary to prevent endangering life, limb, or property may be considered reckless and negligent. Below are just a few of the prohibited methods of operation in Wisconsin.
Specifically, it is unlawful:
• To operate any boat beyond the safe carrying capacity of passengers or cargo or to equip a boat in excess of its safe power.
• To operate a boat within an area clearly marked in accordance with the law by buoys or some other distinguishing device as a bathing or swimming area or other restricted use area.
• To allow any person to ride or sit on the gunwales, tops of seats, backs or sides or on the decking over the bow on a motorboat while underway, unless such a person is inboard of guards or railings provided to prevent passengers from being lost overboard, except for when anchoring, mooring or casting off.
• To operate a motorboat repeatedly in a circuitous course within 200 feet around any other boat or around any person who is swimming.
• For any boat or water skier to operate or approach closer than 100 feet to any skin diver's flag or any swimmer unless the boat is part of the skin diving operation or is accompanying the swimmer.
• To operate any type of motorboat that is engaged in skiing, aquaplaning or similar activity within 100 feet of any occupied anchored boat, marked swimming area, or public boat landing.
• To operate any type of motorboat that is engaged in skiing, aquaplaning or similar activity and get within 100 feet of a personal watercraft or allow the tow rope to get within 100 feet of a personal watercraft.
Additional laws that apply to personal watercraft (PWC):
A personal watercraft is considered a motorboat and must follow the same laws and regulations as above. In addition there are other laws that apply to personal watercraft (PWC). Specifically , it is unlawful:
To operate a PWC between sunset and sunrise.
To participate in water skiing, aquaplaning, or similar tow sport activity unless the PWC is designed to seat three people.
To operate a PWC at greater than slow-no-wake speed anytime:
The PWC is within 100 feet of any other boat or PWC on any body of water.
The PWC is within 200 feet of the shoreline of any lake.
To operate a PWC within 100 feet of the following:
Another boat towing a skier or person engaged in a similar activity.
The tow rope of another motorboat towing a skier or person engaged in a similar activity.
THE LAKE THOMPSON ASSOCIATION WOULD LIKE TO INSURE THE SAFETY OF ALL ITS RESIDENTS AND GUESTS. PLEASE COMPLY WITH WISCONSIN’S BOATING LAWS. THE LAKE ASSOCIATION ALSO ASKS THAT YOU CONFINE JET SKI, WATER SKI, TUBING AND RELATED PLAY ACTIVITIES TO THE HOURS BETWEEN 10:00 AM AND 7:00 PM.