Chapter 1547: WATERCRAFT AND WATERWAYS

1547.01 Watercraft and waterway definitions.

(A) As used in sections 1541.03 , 1547.26 , 1547.39 , 1547.40 , 1547.53 , 1547.54 , 1547.541 , 1547.542 , 1547.543 , 1547.56 , 1547.57 , 1547.66 , and 5311.01 of the Revised Code, "watercraft" means any of the following when used or capable of being used for transportation on the water:

(1) A vessel operated by machinery either permanently or temporarily affixed;

(2) A sailboat other than a sailboard;

(3) An inflatable, manually propelled boat that is required by federal law to have a hull identification number meeting the requirements of the United States coast guard;

(4) A canoe or rowboat.

"Watercraft" does not include ferries as referred to in Chapter 4583. of the Revised Code.

Watercraft subject to section 1547.54 of the Revised Code shall be divided into five classes as follows:

Class A: Less than sixteen feet in length;

Class 1: At least sixteen feet, but less than twenty-six feet in length;

Class 2: At least twenty-six feet, but less than forty feet in length;

Class 3: At least forty feet, but less than sixty-five feet in length;

Class 4: At least sixty-five feet in length.

(B) As used in this chapter:

(1) "Vessel" includes every description of craft, including nondisplacement craft and seaplanes, designed to be used as a means of transportation on water.

(2) "Rowboat" means any vessel, except a canoe, that is designed to be rowed and that is propelled by human muscular effort by oars or paddles and upon which no mechanical propulsion device, electric motor, internal combustion engine, or sail has been affixed or is used for the operation of the vessel.

(3) "Sailboat" means any vessel, equipped with mast and sails, dependent upon the wind to propel it in the normal course of operation.

(a) Any sailboat equipped with an inboard engine is deemed a powercraft with auxiliary sail.

(b) Any sailboat equipped with a detachable motor is deemed a sailboat with auxiliary power.

(c) Any sailboat being propelled by mechanical power, whether under sail or not, is deemed a powercraft and subject to all laws and rules governing powercraft operation.

(4) "Powercraft" means any vessel propelled by machinery, fuel, rockets, or similar device.

(5) "Person" includes any legal entity defined as a person in section 1.59 of the Revised Code and any body politic, except the United States and this state, and includes any agent, trustee, executor, receiver, assignee, or other representative thereof.

(6) "Owner" includes any person who claims lawful possession of a vessel by virtue of legal title or equitable interest therein that entitled the person to that possession.

(7) "Operator" includes any person who navigates or has under the person's control a vessel, or vessel and detachable motor, on the waters in this state.

(8) "Visible" means visible on a dark night with clear atmosphere.

(9) "Waters in this state" means all streams, rivers, lakes, ponds, marshes, watercourses, waterways, and other bodies of water, natural or humanmade, that are situated wholly or partially within this state or within its jurisdiction and are used for recreational boating.

(10) "Navigable waters" means waters that come under the jurisdiction of the department of the army of the United States and any waterways within or adjacent to this state, except inland lakes having neither a navigable inlet nor outlet.

(11) "In operation" in reference to a vessel means that the vessel is being navigated or otherwise used on the waters in this state.

(12) "Sewage" means human body wastes and the wastes from toilets and other receptacles intended to receive or retain body waste.

(13) "Canoe" means a narrow vessel of shallow draft, pointed at both ends and propelled by human muscular effort, and includes kayaks, racing shells, and rowing sculls.

(14) "Coast guard approved" means bearing an approval number assigned by the United States coast guard.

(15) "Type one personal flotation device" means a device that is designed to turn an unconscious person floating in water from a face downward position to a vertical or slightly face upward position and that has at least nine kilograms, approximately twenty pounds, of buoyancy.

(16) "Type two personal flotation device" means a device that is designed to turn an unconscious person in the water from a face downward position to a vertical or slightly face upward position and that has at least seven kilograms, approximately fifteen and four-tenths pounds, of buoyancy.

(17) "Type three personal flotation device" means a device that is designed to keep a conscious person in a vertical or slightly face upward position and that has at least seven kilograms, approximately fifteen and four-tenths pounds, of buoyancy.

(18) "Type four personal flotation device" means a device that is designed to be thrown to a person in the water and not worn and that has at least seven and five-tenths kilograms, approximately sixteen and five-tenths pounds, of buoyancy.

(19) "Type five personal flotation device" means a device that, unlike other personal flotation devices, has limitations on its approval by the United States coast guard, including, without limitation, all of the following:

(a) The approval label on the type five personal flotation device indicates that the device is approved for the activity in which the vessel is being used or as a substitute for a personal flotation device of the type required on the vessel in use.

(b) The personal flotation device is used in accordance with any requirements on the approval label.

(c) The personal flotation device is used in accordance with requirements in its owner's manual if the approval label refers to such a manual.

(20) "Inflatable watercraft" means any vessel constructed of rubber, canvas, or other material that is designed to be inflated with any gaseous substance, constructed with two or more air cells, and operated as a vessel. Inflatable watercraft propelled by a motor shall be classified as powercraft and shall be registered by length. Inflatable watercraft propelled by a sail shall be classified as a sailboat and shall be registered by length.

(21) "Idle speed" means the slowest possible speed needed to maintain steerage or maneuverability.

(22) "Diver's flag" means a red flag not less than one foot square having a diagonal white stripe extending from the masthead to the opposite lower corner that when displayed indicates that divers are in the water.

(23) "Muffler" means an acoustical suppression device or system that is designed and installed to abate the sound of exhaust gases emitted from an internal combustion engine and that prevents excessive or unusual noise.

(24) "Law enforcement vessel" means any vessel used in law enforcement and under the command of a law enforcement officer.

(25) "Personal watercraft" means a vessel, less than sixteen feet in length, that is propelled by machinery and designed to be operated by an individual sitting, standing, or kneeling on the vessel rather than by an individual sitting or standing inside the vessel.

(26) "No wake" has the same meaning as "idle speed."

(27) "Watercraft dealer" means any person who is regularly engaged in the business of manufacturing, selling, displaying, offering for sale, or dealing in vessels at an established place of business. "Watercraft dealer" does not include a person who is a marine salvage dealer or any other person who dismantles, salvages, or rebuilds vessels using used parts.

(28) "Electronic" includes electrical, digital, magnetic, optical, electromagnetic, or any other form of technology that entails capabilities similar to these technologies.

(29) "Electronic record" means a record generated, communicated, received, or stored by electronic means for use in an information system or for transmission from one information system to another.

(30) "Electronic signature" means a signature in electronic form attached to or logically associated with an electronic record.

(31) "Drug of abuse" has the same meaning as in section 4506.01 of the Revised Code.

(32) "Watercourse" means a substantially natural channel with recognized banks and bottom in which a flow of water occurs, with an average of at least ten feet mean surface water width and at least five miles of length.

(33) "Impoundment" means the reservoir created by a dam or other artificial barrier across a watercourse that causes water to be stored deeper than and generally beyond the banks of the natural channel of the watercourse during periods of normal flow, but does not include water stored behind rock piles, rock riffle dams, and low channel dams where the depth of water is less than ten feet above the channel bottom and is essentially confined within the banks of the natural channel during periods of normal stream flow.

(34) "Wild river area" means an area declared a wild river area by the director of natural resources under this chapter and includes those rivers or sections of rivers that are free of impoundments and generally inaccessible except by trail, with watersheds or shorelines essentially primitive and waters unpolluted, representing vestiges of primitive America.

(35) "Scenic river area" means an area declared a scenic river area by the director under this chapter and includes those rivers or sections of rivers that are free of impoundments, with shorelines or watersheds still largely primitive and shorelines largely undeveloped, but accessible in places by roads.

(36) "Recreational river area" means an area declared a recreational river area by the director under this chapter and includes those rivers or sections of rivers that are readily accessible by road or railroad, that may have some development along their shorelines, and that may have undergone some impoundment or diversion in the past.

Amended by 129th General AssemblyFile No.28, HB 153, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2011.

Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 07-05-2002; 08-17-2006

1547.02 Applicability of chapter to vessels operating on the waters in this state.

Unless otherwise provided, this chapter applies to all vessels operating on the waters in this state. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed in contravention of any valid federal act or regulation, but is in addition to the act or regulation where not inconsistent.

The state reserves to itself the exclusive right to regulate the minimum equipment requirements of watercraft and vessels operated on the waters in this state.

Added by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.03 Flashing light prohibition.

No person shall install or use any intermittently flashing light of any type or color on any vessel in use or operation on the waters in this state, except in accordance with federal law.

No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.04 Siren prohibition - exception.

No person, except an authorized watercraft representative of the federal government, the state, or any of its political subdivisions shall use or operate a siren on the waters in this state except for emergency purposes.

No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.05 Completing boating course as prerequisite to licensing; exception.

(A) Except as provided in division (B) of this section, no person born on or after January 1, 1982, shall operate on the waters in this state a powercraft powered by more than ten horsepower, unless the operator successfully has completed either a safe boater course approved by the national association of state boating law administrators or a proctored or nonproctored proficiency examination that tests knowledge of information included in the curriculum of such a course, and has received a certificate as evidence of successful completion of the course or examination.

(B) Division (A) of this section does not apply to an individual who possesses valid merchant mariner credentials issued by the United States coast guard in accordance with 46 C.F.R. 10.109 with at least one endorsement of master or operator as defined in 46 C.F.R. 10.107. Such an individual, while operating any recreational vessel on the waters in this state, shall carry onboard documentation of the merchant mariner credentials and required endorsements and shall present the documentation to a watercraft officer or law enforcement officer upon request.

(C) No person shall permit a powercraft to be operated on the waters in this state in violation of division (A) of this section.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 26, HB 29, §1, eff. 7/10/2013.

Effective Date: 01-01-2000; 04-06-2007

1547.051 Presenting proof of license.

A person born on or after January 1, 1982, who is operating on the waters in this state a powercraft powered by more than ten horsepower and who is stopped by a law enforcement officer in the enforcement of Chapter 1547. of the Revised Code or rules adopted under it shall present to the law enforcement officer, not later than seventy-two hours after being stopped, a certificate obtained by the person pursuant to section 1547.05 of the Revised Code prior to being stopped or proof of holding such a certificate. Failure of the person to present the certificate or proof of holding it within seventy-two hours constitutes prima-facie evidence of a violation of section 1547.05 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 01-01-2000

1547.052 Powercraft rentals.

(A) No rental business shall lease, hire, or rent a powercraft powered by more than ten horsepower for operation on the waters in this state to a person born on or after January 1, 1982, unless the person meets one of the following requirements:

(1) The person signs a statement on the rental agreement or attached to the rental agreement that the person has successfully completed a safe boater course approved by the national association of state boating law administrators or has successfully completed a proficiency examination as provided in section 1547.05 of the Revised Code.

(2) The person receives educational materials from the rental business and successfully passes, with a score of ninety per cent or better, an abbreviated examination given by the rental business. The achievement of a passing score on the examination shall be indicated on or attached to the powercraft rental agreement.

(B) Any person born on or after January 1, 1982, operating or supervising the operation of a leased, hired, or rented powercraft shall:

(1) Meet the requirements for boater education of division (A) of this section.

(2) Be named as an operator on the agreement that leases, hires, or rents the powercraft.

(C) The division of watercraft shall make available to all watercraft rental businesses in Ohio boater safety educational materials and an abbreviated examination that shall be used by the watercraft rental business for the purposes of division (A)(2) of this section.

Effective Date: 01-01-2000

1547.06 Child operators.

(A) Except as otherwise provided in this division, no person under sixteen years of age shall operate a personal watercraft on the waters in this state. A person who is not less than twelve, nor more than fifteen years of age may operate a personal watercraft if a supervising person eighteen years of age or older is aboard the personal watercraft and, in the case of a supervising person born on or after January 1, 1982, if the supervising person holds a certificate obtained under section 1547.05 of the Revised Code or, in the case of a rented powercraft, meets the requirements of section 1547.052 of the Revised Code.

(B) No person under twelve years of age shall operate any vessel on the waters in this state unless the person is under the direct visual and audible supervision, during the operation, of a person who is eighteen years of age or older. This division does not apply to a personal watercraft, which shall be governed by division (A) of this section, or to a powercraft, other than a personal watercraft, powered by more than ten horsepower, which shall be governed by division (C) of this section.

(C) No person under twelve years of age shall operate on the waters in this state a powercraft, other than a personal watercraft, powered by more than ten horsepower unless the person is under the direct visual and audible supervision, during the operation, of a person eighteen years of age or older who is aboard the powercraft and, in the case of such a supervising person born on or after January 1, 1982, who holds a certificate obtained under section 1547.05 of the Revised Code or, in the case of a rented powercraft, meets the requirements of section 1547.052 of the Revised Code.

(D) No supervising person eighteen years of age or older shall permit any person who is under the supervising person's supervision and who is operating a vessel on the waters in this state to violate any section of this chapter or a rule adopted under it.

Effective Date: 01-01-2000

1547.07 Reckless or unsafe operation of vessel, water skis, aquaplane.

(A) Any person who operates any vessel or manipulates any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device on the waters in this state carelessly or heedlessly, or in disregard of the rights or safety of any person, vessel, or property, or without due caution, at a rate of speed or in a manner so as to endanger any person, vessel, or property is guilty of reckless operation of the vessel or other device.

(B) No person shall operate or permit the operation of a vessel in an unsafe manner. A vessel shall be operated in a reasonable and prudent manner at all times.

Unsafe vessel operation includes, without limitation, any of the following:

(1) A vessel becoming airborne or completely leaving the water while crossing the wake of another vessel at a distance of less than one hundred feet, or at an unsafe distance, from the vessel creating the wake;

(2) Operating at such a speed and proximity to another vessel or to a person attempting to ride on one or more water skis, surfboard, inflatable device, or similar device being towed by a vessel so as to require the operator of either vessel to swerve or turn abruptly to avoid collision;

(3) Operating less than two hundred feet directly behind a person water skiing or attempting to water ski;

(4) Weaving through congested traffic.

Effective Date: 03-18-1997

1547.071 Authority of law enforcement officer when especially hazardous condition exists.

(A) If a law enforcement officer observes a vessel being used and determines that at least one of the unsafe conditions identified in division (C) of this section is present and that an especially hazardous condition exists, the officer may direct the operator of the vessel to take whatever immediate and reasonable actions are necessary for the safety of the persons aboard the vessel, including directing the operator to return the vessel to mooring and remain there until the situation creating the hazardous condition is corrected or has ended.

For the purposes of this section, an especially hazardous condition is one in which a reasonably prudent person would believe that the continued operation of a vessel would create a special hazard to the safety of the persons aboard the vessel.

(B) The refusal by an operator of a vessel to terminate use of the vessel after being ordered to do so by a law enforcement officer under division (A) of this section is prima-facie evidence of a violation of section 1547.07 of the Revised Code.

(C) For the purposes of this section, any of the following is an unsafe condition:

(1) Insufficient personal flotation devices;

(2) Insufficient fire extinguishers;

(3) Overloaded, insufficient freeboard for the water conditions in which the vessel is operating;

(4) Improper display of navigation lights;

(5) Fuel leaks, including fuel leaking from either the engine or the fuel system;

(6) Accumulation of or an abnormal amount of fuel in the bilges;

(7) Inadequate backfire flame control;

(8) Improper ventilation.

(D) This section does not apply to any of the following:

(1) Foreign vessels temporarily using waters that are subject to the jurisdiction of the United States;

(2) Military vessels, vessels owned by the state or a political subdivision, or other public vessels, except those that are used for recreation;

(3) A ship's lifeboats, as defined in section 1548.01 of the Revised Code;

(4) Vessels that are solely commercial and that are carrying more than six passengers for hire.

Effective Date: 03-18-1997

1547.072 Operator of vessel to maintain control.

No person shall operate or permit the operation of a vessel on the waters in this state without maintaining sufficient control to avoid an incident that results in property damage, physical injury, loss of life, or any combination of them.

Effective Date: 2008 SB271 06-13-2008

1547.08 Prohibiting operation in certain areas - low speed areas.

(A) No person shall operate a vessel within or through a designated bathing area or within or through any area that has been buoyed off designating it as an area in which vessels are prohibited.

(B)

(1) No person shall operate a vessel at greater than idle speed or at a speed that creates a wake under any of the following circumstances:

(a) Within three hundred feet of any marina, boat docking facility, boat gasoline dock, launch ramp, recreational boat harbor, or harbor entrance on Lake Erie or on the Ohio river;

(b) During the period from sunset to sunrise according to local time within any water between the Dan Beard bridge and the Brent Spence bridge on the Ohio river for any vessel not documented by the United States coast guard as commercial;

(c) Within any area buoyed or marked as a no wake area on the waters in this state.

(2) Division (B)(1) of this section does not apply in either of the following places:

(a) An area designated by the chief of the division of watercraft unless it is marked by a buoy or sign as a no wake or idle speed area;

(b) Within any water between the Dan Beard bridge and the Brent Spence bridge on the Ohio river when the United States coast guard has authorized the holding of a special event of a community nature on that water.

(C) No person shall operate a vessel in any area of restricted or controlled operation in violation of the designated restriction.

(D) No person shall operate a vessel within three hundred feet of an official diver's flag unless the person is tendering the diving operation.

(E) All areas of restricted or controlled operation as described in division (A) of this section or as provided for in section 1547.14 or 1547.61 of the Revised Code shall be marked by a buoy or sign designating the restriction. All waters surrounded by or lying between such a buoy or sign and the closest shoreline are thereby designated as an area in which the designated restrictions shall apply in the operation of any vessel.

Markings on buoys designating areas of restricted or controlled operation shall be so spaced as to show all around the horizon. Lineal spacing between the buoys shall be such that under normal conditions of visibility any buoy shall be readily visible from the next adjacent buoy. No colors or symbols, except as provided for in rules of the chief, shall be used on buoys or signs for marking closed or controlled areas of boating waters.

Any state department, conservancy district, or political subdivision having jurisdiction and control of impounded boating waters may place such buoys or signs on its waters. Any political subdivision may apply to the chief for permission to place such buoys or signs on other waters within its territorial limits. No person shall place or cause to be placed a regulatory buoy or sign on, into, or along the waters in this state unless the person has complied with all the provisions of this chapter.

(F) No person shall enter, operate a vessel that enters, or allow a vessel to enter a federally declared security zone as defined in 33 C.F.R. Chapter I, subparts 6.01 -1, 6.01 -2, 6.01 -3, 6.01 -4, 6.01 -5, 6.04 -1, 6.04 -5, 6.04 -6, 6.04 -7, and 6.04 -8.

(G) No person shall permit any vessel to be operated on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 10-26-2001; 04-06-2007

1547.09 Prohibited acts.

No person shall moor or anchor any vessel in a designated speed zone or water ski zone. No person, unless in distress and no other vessel is endangered thereby, shall moor to, anchor to, or tie up to any marker, aid, buoy, light, or other aid to navigation.

No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.10 Stopping and furnishing information upon accident or collision.

In case of accident to or collision with persons or property on the waters of this state, due to the operation of any vessel, the operator having knowledge of the accident or collision shall immediately stop the vessel at the scene of the accident or collision, to the extent that it is safe and practical, and shall remain at the scene of the accident or collision until he has given his name and address and, if he is not the owner, the name and address of the owner of the vessel, together with the registration number of the vessel, if any, to any person injured in the accident or collision or to the operator, occupant, owner, or attendant of any vessel damaged in the accident or collision, or to any law enforcement officer at the scene of the accident or collision.

If the injured person is unable to comprehend and record the information required to be given by this section, the other operator involved in the accident or collision shall forthwith notify the nearest law enforcement agency having authority concerning the location of the accident or collision, and his name, address, and the registration number, if any, of the vessel he was operating, and then remain at the scene of the accident or collision or at the nearest location from which notification is possible until a law enforcement officer arrives, unless removed from the scene by an emergency vehicle operated by the state or a political subdivision or by an ambulance.

If the accident or collision is with an unoccupied or unattended vessel, the operator so colliding with the vessel shall securely attach the information required to be given in this section, in writing, to a conspicuous place in or on the unoccupied or unattended vessel.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.11 Operation, control, or manipulation under influence of alcohol or drug.

(A) No person shall operate or be in physical control of any vessel underway or shall manipulate any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device on the waters in this state if, at the time of the operation, control, or manipulation, any of the following applies:

(1) The person is under the influence of alcohol, a drug of abuse, or a combination of them.

(2) The person has a concentration of eight-hundredths of one per cent or more by weight of alcohol per unit volume in the person's whole blood.

(3) The person has a concentration of ninety-six-thousandths of one per cent or more by weight per unit volume of alcohol in the person's blood serum or plasma.

(4) The person has a concentration of eleven-hundredths of one gram or more by weight of alcohol per one hundred milliliters of the person's urine.

(5) The person has a concentration of eight-hundredths of one gram or more by weight of alcohol per two hundred ten liters of the person's breath.

(6) Except as provided in division (H) of this section, the person has a concentration of any of the following controlled substances or metabolites of a controlled substance in the person's whole blood, blood serum or plasma, or urine that equals or exceeds any of the following:

(a) The person has a concentration of amphetamine in the person's urine of at least five hundred nanograms of amphetamine per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of amphetamine in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least one hundred nanograms of amphetamine per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(b) The person has a concentration of cocaine in the person's urine of at least one hundred fifty nanograms of cocaine per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of cocaine in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least fifty nanograms of cocaine per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(c) The person has a concentration of cocaine metabolite in the person's urine of at least one hundred fifty nanograms of cocaine metabolite per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of cocaine metabolite in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least fifty nanograms of cocaine metabolite per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(d) The person has a concentration of heroin in the person's urine of at least two thousand nanograms of heroin per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of heroin in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least fifty nanograms of heroin per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(e) The person has a concentration of heroin metabolite (6-monoacetyl morphine) in the person's urine of at least ten nanograms of heroin metabolite (6-monoacetyl morphine) per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of heroin metabolite (6-monoacetyl morphine) in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least ten nanograms of heroin metabolite (6-monoacetyl morphine) per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(f) The person has a concentration of L.S.D. in the person's urine of at least twenty-five nanograms of L.S.D. per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of L.S.D. in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least ten nanograms of L.S.D. per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(g) The person has a concentration of marihuana in the person's urine of at least ten nanograms of marihuana per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of marihuana in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least two nanograms of marihuana per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(h) The state board of pharmacy has adopted a rule pursuant to section 4729.041 of the Revised Code that specifies the amount of salvia divinorum and the amount of salvinorin A that constitute concentrations of salvia divinorum and salvinorin A in a person's urine, in a person's whole blood, or in a person's blood serum or plasma at or above which the person is impaired for purposes of operating or being in physical control of any vessel underway or manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device on the waters of this state, the rule is in effect, and the person has a concentration of salvia divinorum or salvinorin A of at least that amount so specified by rule in the person's urine, in the person's whole blood, or in the person's blood serum or plasma.

(i) Either of the following applies:

(i) The person is under the influence of alcohol, a drug of abuse, or a combination of them, and, as measured by gas chromatography mass spectrometry, the person has a concentration of marihuana metabolite in the person's urine of at least fifteen nanograms of marihuana metabolite per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of marihuana metabolite in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least five nanograms of marihuana metabolite per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(ii) As measured by gas chromatography mass spectrometry, the person has a concentration of marihuana metabolite in the person's urine of at least thirty-five nanograms of marihuana metabolite per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of marihuana metabolite in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least fifty nanograms of marihuana metabolite per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(j) The person has a concentration of methamphetamine in the person's urine of at least five hundred nanograms of methamphetamine per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of methamphetamine in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least one hundred nanograms of methamphetamine per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(k) The person has a concentration of phencyclidine in the person's urine of at least twenty-five nanograms of phencyclidine per milliliter of the person's urine or has a concentration of phencyclidine in the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma of at least ten nanograms of phencyclidine per milliliter of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma.

(B) No person under twenty-one years of age shall operate or be in physical control of any vessel underway or shall manipulate any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device on the waters in this state if, at the time of the operation, control, or manipulation, any of the following applies:

(1) The person has a concentration of at least two-hundredths of one per cent, but less than eight-hundredths of one per cent by weight per unit volume of alcohol in the person's whole blood.

(2) The person has a concentration of at least three-hundredths of one per cent but less than ninety-six-thousandths of one per cent by weight per unit volume of alcohol in the person's blood serum or plasma.

(3) The person has a concentration of at least twenty-eight one-thousandths of one gram, but less than eleven-hundredths of one gram by weight of alcohol per one hundred milliliters of the person's urine.

(4) The person has a concentration of at least two-hundredths of one gram, but less than eight-hundredths of one gram by weight of alcohol per two hundred ten liters of the person's breath.

(C) In any proceeding arising out of one incident, a person may be charged with a violation of division (A)(1) and a violation of division (B)(1), (2), (3), or (4) of this section, but the person shall not be convicted of more than one violation of those divisions.

(D)

(1)

(a) In any criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding for a violation of division (A) or (B) of this section or for an equivalent offense that is watercraft-related, the result of any test of any blood or urine withdrawn and analyzed at any health care provider, as defined in section 2317.02 of the Revised Code, may be admitted with expert testimony to be considered with any other relevant and competent evidence in determining the guilt or innocence of the defendant.

(b) In any criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding for a violation of division (A) or (B) of this section or for an equivalent offense that is watercraft-related, the court may admit evidence on the concentration of alcohol, drugs of abuse, controlled substances, metabolites of a controlled substance, or a combination of them in the defendant's or child's whole blood, blood serum or plasma, urine, or breath at the time of the alleged violation as shown by chemical analysis of the substance withdrawn, or specimen taken within three hours of the time of the alleged violation. The three-hour time limit specified in this division regarding the admission of evidence does not extend or affect the two-hour time limit specified in division (C) of section 1547.111 of the Revised Code as the maximum period of time during which a person may consent to a chemical test or tests as described in that section. The court may admit evidence on the concentration of alcohol, drugs of abuse, or a combination of them as described in this division when a person submits to a blood, breath, urine, or other bodily substance test at the request of a law enforcement officer under section 1547.111 of the Revised Code or a blood or urine sample is obtained pursuant to a search warrant. Only a physician, a registered nurse, an emergency medical technician-intermediate, an emergency medical technician-paramedic, or a qualified technician, chemist, or phlebotomist shall withdraw blood for the purpose of determining the alcohol, drug, controlled substance, metabolite of a controlled substance, or combination content of the whole blood, blood serum, or blood plasma. This limitation does not apply to the taking of breath or urine specimens. A person authorized to withdraw blood under this division may refuse to withdraw blood under this division if, in that person's opinion, the physical welfare of the defendant or child would be endangered by withdrawing blood.

The whole blood, blood serum or plasma, urine, or breath withdrawn under division (D)(1)(b) of this section shall be analyzed in accordance with methods approved by the director of health by an individual possessing a valid permit issued by the director pursuant to section 3701.143 of the Revised Code.

(2) In a criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding for a violation of division (A) of this section or for an equivalent offense that is watercraft-related, if there was at the time the bodily substance was taken a concentration of less than the applicable concentration of alcohol specified for a violation of division (A)(2), (3), (4), or (5) of this section or less than the applicable concentration of a listed controlled substance or a listed metabolite of a controlled substance specified for a violation of division (A)(6) of this section, that fact may be considered with other competent evidence in determining the guilt or innocence of the defendant or in making an adjudication for the child. This division does not limit or affect a criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding for a violation of division (B) of this section or for a violation of a prohibition that is substantially equivalent to that division.

(3) Upon the request of the person who was tested, the results of the chemical test shall be made available to the person or the person's attorney immediately upon completion of the test analysis.

If the chemical test was administered pursuant to division (D)(1)(b) of this section, the person tested may have a physician, a registered nurse, or a qualified technician, chemist, or phlebotomist of the person's own choosing administer a chemical test or tests in addition to any administered at the direction of a law enforcement officer, and shall be so advised. The failure or inability to obtain an additional test by a person shall not preclude the admission of evidence relating to the test or tests taken at the direction of a law enforcement officer.

(E)

(1) In any criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding for a violation of division (A) or (B) of this section, of a municipal ordinance relating to operating or being in physical control of any vessel underway or to manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device on the waters of this state while under the influence of alcohol, a drug of abuse, or a combination of them, or of a municipal ordinance relating to operating or being in physical control of any vessel underway or to manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device on the waters of this state with a prohibited concentration of alcohol, a controlled substance, or a metabolite of a controlled substance in the whole blood, blood serum or plasma, breath, or urine, if a law enforcement officer has administered a field sobriety test to the operator or person found to be in physical control of the vessel underway involved in the violation or the person manipulating the water skis, aquaplane, or similar device involved in the violation and if it is shown by clear and convincing evidence that the officer administered the test in substantial compliance with the testing standards for reliable, credible, and generally accepted field sobriety tests for vehicles that were in effect at the time the tests were administered, including, but not limited to, any testing standards then in effect that have been set by the national highway traffic safety administration, that by their nature are not clearly inapplicable regarding the operation or physical control of vessels underway or the manipulation of water skis, aquaplanes, or similar devices, all of the following apply:

(a) The officer may testify concerning the results of the field sobriety test so administered.

(b) The prosecution may introduce the results of the field sobriety test so administered as evidence in any proceedings in the criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding.

(c) If testimony is presented or evidence is introduced under division (E)(1)(a) or (b) of this section and if the testimony or evidence is admissible under the Rules of Evidence, the court shall admit the testimony or evidence, and the trier of fact shall give it whatever weight the trier of fact considers to be appropriate.

(2) Division (E)(1) of this section does not limit or preclude a court, in its determination of whether the arrest of a person was supported by probable cause or its determination of any other matter in a criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding of a type described in that division, from considering evidence or testimony that is not otherwise disallowed by division (E)(1) of this section.

(F)

(1) Subject to division (F)(3) of this section, in any criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding for a violation of division (A) or (B) of this section or for an equivalent offense that is substantially equivalent to either of those divisions, the court shall admit as prima-facie evidence a laboratory report from any laboratory personnel issued a permit by the department of health authorizing an analysis as described in this division that contains an analysis of the whole blood, blood serum or plasma, breath, urine, or other bodily substance tested and that contains all of the information specified in this division. The laboratory report shall contain all of the following:

(a) The signature, under oath, of any person who performed the analysis;

(b) Any findings as to the identity and quantity of alcohol, a drug of abuse, a controlled substance, a metabolite of a controlled substance, or a combination of them that was found;

(c) A copy of a notarized statement by the laboratory director or a designee of the director that contains the name of each certified analyst or test performer involved with the report, the analyst's or test performer's employment relationship with the laboratory that issued the report, and a notation that performing an analysis of the type involved is part of the analyst's or test performer's regular duties;

(d) An outline of the analyst's or test performer's education, training, and experience in performing the type of analysis involved and a certification that the laboratory satisfies appropriate quality control standards in general and, in this particular analysis, under rules of the department of health.

(2) Notwithstanding any other provision of law regarding the admission of evidence, a report of the type described in division (F)(1) of this section is not admissible against the defendant or child to whom it pertains in any proceeding, other than a preliminary hearing or a grand jury proceeding, unless the prosecutor has served a copy of the report on the defendant's or child's attorney or, if the defendant or child has no attorney, on the defendant or child.

(3) A report of the type described in division (F)(1) of this section shall not be prima-facie evidence of the contents, identity, or amount of any substance if, within seven days after the defendant or child to whom the report pertains or the defendant's or child's attorney receives a copy of the report, the defendant or child or the defendant's or child's attorney demands the testimony of the person who signed the report. The judge in the case may extend the seven-day time limit in the interest of justice.

(G) Except as otherwise provided in this division, any physician, registered nurse, emergency medical technician-intermediate, emergency medical technician-paramedic, or qualified technician, chemist, or phlebotomist who withdraws blood from a person pursuant to this section or section 1547.111 of the Revised Code, and a hospital, first-aid station, or clinic at which blood is withdrawn from a person pursuant to this section or section 1547.111 of the Revised Code, is immune from criminal and civil liability based upon a claim of assault and battery or any other claim that is not a claim of malpractice, for any act performed in withdrawing blood from the person. The immunity provided in this division also extends to an emergency medical service organization that employs an emergency medical technician-intermediate, an emergency medical technician-paramedic who withdraws blood under this section. The immunity provided in this division is not available to a person who withdraws blood if the person engages in willful or wanton misconduct.

(H) Division (A)(6) of this section does not apply to a person who operates or is in physical control of a vessel underway or manipulates any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device while the person has a concentration of a listed controlled substance or a listed metabolite of a controlled substance in the person's whole blood, blood serum or plasma, or urine that equals or exceeds the amount specified in that division, if both of the following apply:

(1) The person obtained the controlled substance pursuant to a prescription issued by a licensed health professional authorized to prescribe drugs.

(2) The person injected, ingested, or inhaled the controlled substance in accordance with the health professional's directions.

(I) As used in this section and section 1547.111 of the Revised Code:

(1) "Equivalent offense" has the same meaning as in section 4511.181 of the Revised Code.

(2) "National highway traffic safety administration" has the same meaning as in section 4511.19 of the Revised Code.

(3) "Operate" means that a vessel is being used on the waters in this state when the vessel is not securely affixed to a dock or to shore or to any permanent structure to which the vessel has the right to affix or that a vessel is not anchored in a designated anchorage area or boat camping area that is established by the United States coast guard, this state, or a political subdivision and in which the vessel has the right to anchor.

(4) "Controlled substance" and "marihuana" have the same meanings as in section 3719.01 of the Revised Code.

(5) "Cocaine" and "L.S.D." have the same meanings as in section 2925.01 of the Revised Code.

(6) "Equivalent offense that is watercraft-related" means an equivalent offense that is one of the following:

(a) A violation of division (A) or (B) of this section;

(b) A violation of a municipal ordinance prohibiting a person from operating or being in physical control of any vessel underway or from manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device on the waters of this state while under the influence of alcohol, a drug of abuse, or a combination of them or prohibiting a person from operating or being in physical control of any vessel underway or from manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device on the waters of this state with a prohibited concentration of alcohol, a controlled substance, or a metabolite of a controlled substance in the whole blood, blood serum or plasma, breath, or urine;

(c) A violation of an existing or former municipal ordinance, law of another state, or law of the United States that is substantially equivalent to division (A) or (B) of this section;

(d) A violation of a former law of this state that was substantially equivalent to division (A) or (B) of this section.

(7) "Emergency medical technician-intermediate" and "emergency medical technician-paramedic" have the same meanings as in section 4765.01 of the Revised Code.

Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.50, SB 58, §1, eff. 9/17/2010.

Effective Date: 01-01-2004; 09-23-2004; 08-17-2006; 2008 SB17 09-30-2008; 2008 HB215 04-07-2009

1547.111 Implied consent to chemical test.

(A)

(1)

(a) Any person who operates or is in physical control of a vessel or manipulates any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device upon any waters in this state shall be deemed to have given consent to a chemical test or tests to determine the alcohol, drug of abuse, controlled substance, metabolite of a controlled substance, or combination content of the person's whole blood, blood serum or plasma, breath, or urine if arrested for operating or being in physical control of a vessel or manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device in violation of section 1547.11 of the Revised Code or a substantially equivalent municipal ordinance.

(b) The test or tests under division (A)(1) of this section shall be administered at the request of a law enforcement officer having reasonable grounds to believe the person was operating or in physical control of a vessel or manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device in violation of section 1547.11 of the Revised Code or a substantially equivalent municipal ordinance. The law enforcement agency by which the officer is employed shall designate which test or tests shall be administered.

(2) Any person who is dead or unconscious or who otherwise is in a condition rendering the person incapable of refusal shall be deemed to have consented as provided in division (A)(1) of this section, and the test or tests may be administered, subject to sections 313.12 to 313.16 of the Revised Code.

(B)

(1) If a law enforcement officer arrests a person for operating or being in physical control of a vessel or manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device in violation of section 1547.11 of the Revised Code or a substantially equivalent municipal ordinance and if the person previously has been convicted of or pleaded guilty to two or more violations of section 1547.11 of the Revised Code or other equivalent offenses, the law enforcement officer shall request the person to submit, and the person shall submit, to a chemical test or tests of the person's whole blood, blood serum or plasma, breath, or urine for the purpose of determining the alcohol, drug of abuse, controlled substance, metabolite of a controlled substance, or combination content of the person's whole blood, blood serum or plasma, breath, or urine. A law enforcement officer who makes a request pursuant to this division that a person submit to a chemical test or tests is not required to advise the person of the consequences of refusing to submit to the test or tests and is not required to give the person the form described in division (C) of this section, but the officer shall advise the person at the time of the arrest that if the person refuses to take a chemical test the officer may employ whatever reasonable means are necessary to ensure that the person submits to a chemical test of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma. The officer shall also advise the person at the time of the arrest that the person may have an independent chemical test taken at the person's own expense. The advice shall be in written form prescribed by the chief of the division of watercraft and shall be read to the person. The form shall contain a statement that the form was shown to the person under arrest and read to the person by the arresting officer. The reading of the form shall be witnessed by one or more persons, and the witnesses shall certify to this fact by signing the form. Divisions (A)(1)(b) and (A)(2) of this section apply to the administration of a chemical test or tests pursuant to this division.

(2) If a person refuses to submit to a chemical test upon a request made pursuant to division (B)(1) of this section, the law enforcement officer who made the request may employ whatever reasonable means are necessary to ensure that the person submits to a chemical test of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma. A law enforcement officer who acts pursuant to this division to ensure that a person submits to a chemical test of the person's whole blood or blood serum or plasma is immune from criminal and civil liability based upon a claim for assault and battery or any other claim for the acts, unless the officer so acted with malicious purpose, in bad faith, or in a wanton or reckless manner.

(C) Except as provided in division (B) of this section, any person under arrest for violating section 1547.11 of the Revised Code or a substantially equivalent municipal ordinance shall be advised of the consequences of refusing to submit to a chemical test or tests designated as provided in division (A) of this section. The advice shall be in a written form prescribed by the chief of the division of watercraft and shall be read to the person. The form shall contain a statement that the form was shown to the person under arrest and read to the person by the arresting officer. The reading of the form shall be witnessed by one or more persons, and the witnesses shall certify to this fact by signing the form. The person must submit to the chemical test or tests, subsequent to the request of the arresting officer, within two hours of the time of the alleged violation, and if the person does not submit to the test or tests within that two-hour time limit, the failure to submit automatically constitutes a refusal to submit to the test or tests.

(D) Except as provided in division (B) of this section, if a law enforcement officer asks a person under arrest for violating section 1547.11 of the Revised Code or a substantially equivalent municipal ordinance to submit to a chemical test or tests as provided in division (A) of this section, if the arresting officer advises the person of the consequences of the person's refusal as provided in division (C) of this section, and if the person refuses to submit, no chemical test shall be given. Upon receipt of a sworn statement of the officer that the arresting law enforcement officer had reasonable grounds to believe the arrested person violated section 1547.11 of the Revised Code or a substantially equivalent municipal ordinance and that the person refused to submit to the chemical test upon the request of the officer, and upon receipt of the form as provided in division (C) of this section certifying that the arrested person was advised of the consequences of the refusal, the chief of the division of watercraft shall inform the person by written notice that the person is prohibited from operating or being in physical control of a vessel, from manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device, and from registering any watercraft in accordance with section 1547.54 of the Revised Code, for one year following the date of the alleged violation. The suspension of these operation, physical control, manipulation, and registration privileges shall continue for the entire one-year period, subject to review as provided in this section.

If the person under arrest is the owner of the vessel involved in the alleged violation, the law enforcement officer who arrested the person shall seize the watercraft registration certificate and tags from the vessel involved in the violation and forward them to the chief. The chief shall retain the impounded registration certificate and tags and shall impound all other registration certificates and tags issued to the person in accordance with sections 1547.54 and 1547.57 of the Revised Code, for a period of one year following the date of the alleged violation, subject to review as provided in this section.

If the arrested person fails to surrender the registration certificate because it is not on the person of the arrested person or in the watercraft, the law enforcement officer who made the arrest shall order the person to surrender it within twenty-four hours to the law enforcement officer or the law enforcement agency that employs the law enforcement officer. If the person fails to do so, the law enforcement officer shall notify the chief of that fact in the statement the officer submits to the chief under this division.

(E) Upon suspending a person's operation, physical control, manipulation, and registration privileges in accordance with division (D) of this section, the chief shall notify the person in writing, at the person's last known address, and inform the person that the person may petition for a hearing in accordance with division (F) of this section. If a person whose operation, physical control, manipulation, and registration privileges have been suspended petitions for a hearing or appeals any adverse decision, the suspension shall begin at the termination of any hearing or appeal unless the hearing or appeal results in a decision favorable to the person.

(F) Any person who has been notified by the chief that the person is prohibited from operating or being in physical control of a vessel or manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device and from registering any watercraft in accordance with section 1547.54 of the Revised Code, or who has had the registration certificate and tags of the person's watercraft impounded pursuant to division (D) of this section, within twenty days of the notification or impoundment, may file a petition in the municipal court or the county court, or if the person is a minor in juvenile court, with jurisdiction over the place at which the arrest occurred, agreeing to pay the cost of the proceedings and alleging error in the action taken by the chief under division (D) of this section or alleging one or more of the matters within the scope of the hearing as provided in this section, or both. The petitioner shall notify the chief of the filing of the petition and send the chief a copy of the petition.

The scope of the hearing is limited to the issues of whether the law enforcement officer had reasonable grounds to believe the petitioner was operating or in physical control of a vessel or manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device in violation of section 1547.11 of the Revised Code or a substantially equivalent municipal ordinance, whether the petitioner was placed under arrest, whether the petitioner refused to submit to the chemical test upon request of the officer, and whether the petitioner was advised of the consequences of the petitioner's refusal.

(G)

(1) The chief shall furnish the court a copy of the affidavit as provided in division (C) of this section and any other relevant information requested by the court.

(2) In hearing the matter and in determining whether the person has shown error in the decision taken by the chief as provided in division (D) of this section, the court shall decide the issue upon the relevant, competent, and material evidence submitted by the chief or the person whose operation, physical control, manipulation, and registration privileges have been suspended.

In the proceedings, the chief shall be represented by the prosecuting attorney of the county in which the petition is filed if the petition is filed in a county court or juvenile court, except that if the arrest occurred within a city or village within the jurisdiction of the county court in which the petition is filed, the city director of law or village solicitor of that city or village shall represent the chief. If the petition is filed in the municipal court, the chief shall be represented as provided in section 1901.34 of the Revised Code.

(3) If the court finds from the evidence submitted that the person has failed to show error in the action taken by the chief under division (D) of this section or in one or more of the matters within the scope of the hearing as provided in division (F) of this section, or both, the court shall assess the cost of the proceeding against the person and shall uphold the suspension of the operation, physical control, use, and registration privileges provided in division (D) of this section. If the court finds that the person has shown error in the action taken by the chief under division (D) of this section or in one or more of the matters within the scope of the hearing as provided in division (F) of this section, or both, the cost of the proceedings shall be paid out of the county treasury of the county in which the proceedings were held, the chief shall reinstate the operation, physical control, manipulation, and registration privileges of the person without charge, and the chief shall return the registration certificate and tags, if impounded, without charge.

(4) The court shall give information in writing of any action taken under this section to the chief.

(H) At the end of any period of suspension or impoundment imposed under this section, and upon request of the person whose operation, physical control, use, and registration privileges were suspended or whose registration certificate and tags were impounded, the chief shall reinstate the person's operation, physical control, manipulation, and registration privileges by written notice and return the certificate and tags.

(I) No person who has received written notice from the chief that the person is prohibited from operating or being in physical control of a vessel, from manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device, and from registering a watercraft, or who has had the registration certificate and tags of the person's watercraft impounded, in accordance with division (D) of this section, shall operate or be in physical control of a vessel or manipulate any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device for a period of one year following the date of the person's alleged violation of section 1547.11 of the Revised Code or the substantially equivalent municipal ordinance.

Effective Date: 01-01-2004; 08-17-2006; 2008 SB17 09-30-2008; 2008 HB215 04-07-2009

1547.12 Incapacitated operators prohibited.

No person shall operate any vessel if the person is so mentally or physically incapacitated as to be unable to operate the vessel in a safe and competent manner.

No person shall permit any vessel to be operated on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.13 Failure to comply with order of law enforcement - fleeing and eluding.

(A) No person shall fail to comply with any lawful order or direction of any law enforcement officer having authority to direct, control, or regulate the operation or use of vessels.

(B) No person shall operate any vessel so as to purposely elude or flee from a law enforcement officer after receiving a visible or audible signal from a law enforcement officer to bring the vessel to a stop.

(C) No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.131 Duty to stop or give way upon approach of law enforcement vessel.

Upon the approach of a law enforcement vessel with at least one flashing, rotating, or oscillating light of a color conforming with the requirements of federal law, the operator of any vessel shall stop if followed or give way in any crossing, head-on, or overtaking situation and shall remain in that position until the law enforcement vessel has passed, except when otherwise directed by a law enforcement officer. If traffic conditions warrant, a siren or other sound producing device also may be operated as an additional signaling device. This section does not relieve the operator of any law enforcement vessel from the duty to operate with due regard for the safety of all persons and property on the waters in this state.

No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.132 Vessel wake restrictions.

(A) As used in this section, "public service" means activities that include, but are not limited to, escorting or patrolling special water events, traffic control, salvage, firefighting, medical assistance, assisting disabled vessels, and search and rescue.

(B) No person shall operate a vessel at a speed that creates a wake within one hundred feet of a stationary law enforcement vessel displaying at least one flashing, oscillating, or rotating light conforming with 33 C.F.R. 88.11 .

(C) No person shall operate a vessel at a speed that creates a wake within one hundred feet of a vessel that is being used to provide public service and that displays at least one flashing, oscillating, or rotating light conforming with 33 C.F.R. 88.12 .

(D) No person shall permit any vessel to be operated on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 2008 SB271 06-13-2008

1547.14 Water skiing activity confined to ski zones.

(A) Except on the waters of the Ohio River or Lake Erie and immediately connected harbors and bays, any person who rides or attempts to ride upon one or more water skis, surfboard, or similar device, or who engages or attempts to engage in barefoot skiing, and any person who operates a vessel towing a person riding or attempting to ride on one or more water skis, surfboard, or similar device, or engaging or attempting to engage in barefoot skiing, shall confine that activity to the water area within a designated ski zone on all bodies of water on which a ski zone has been established.

(B) On all bodies of water where no specific activity zones have been established, the activities described in division (A) of this section shall be confined to areas where the activities are not specifically restricted by this chapter and rules adopted under it.

(C) Divisions (A) and (B) of this section do not apply to an activity described in division (A) of this section if the vessel involved in the activity is traveling at idle speed in a designated no wake zone and the activity is not being conducted in any of the following areas:

(1) Within three hundred feet of a gas dock, marina, launch ramp, or harbor entrance;

(2) Within a designated anchorage area, swim zone, boat swim zone, or boat camping area;

(3) Under a bridge or within three hundred feet of a bridge underpass;

(4) Any area designated as a no ski zone.

(D) No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999; 2008 SB271 06-13-2008

1547.15 Observer required when towing skier.

Any person who operates a vessel towing any person riding or attempting to ride upon one or more water skis or upon a surfboard or similar device, or engaging or attempting to engage in barefoot skiing, on the waters in this state shall have present in the vessel a person or persons other than the operator, ten years of age or older, who shall at all times observe the progress of the person being towed. The operator of the towing vessel shall at all times observe the traffic pattern toward which the vessel is approaching.

No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.16 Water skiing after dark prohibited.

No person shall ride or attempt to ride upon water skis, surfboard, or similar device, or engage or attempt to engage in barefoot skiing, or use or operate any vessel to tow any person thereon on the waters in this state during that period of the day between sunset and sunrise, except upon special permit issued by the state department, conservancy district, or political subdivision having jurisdiction and control of such water.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.17 [Repealed].

Effective Date: 03-04-1983

1547.18 Personal flotation device required.

(A) No person shall ride or attempt to ride on one or more water skis, surfboard, inflatable device, or similar device being towed by a vessel without wearing an adequate and effective coast guard approved type one, two, or three personal flotation device or type five personal flotation device specifically designed for water skiing, in good and serviceable condition and of appropriate size, except upon special permit issued by the state department, conservancy district, or political subdivision having jurisdiction and control of the water.

(B) No person shall engage or attempt to engage in barefoot skiing without wearing an adequate and effective coast guard approved type one, two, or three personal flotation device or type five personal flotation device specifically designed for water skiing, in good and serviceable condition and of appropriate size, or a wet suit specifically designed for barefoot skiing.

(C) No operator of a vessel shall tow any person who fails to comply with division (A) or (B) of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1997

1547.19 Ski jumps prohibited.

No person shall install or maintain any structure or inclined platform known as a water ski jump on the waters in this state. No person shall use any such platform or structure for the purpose of water ski jumping, except upon special permit issued by the state department, conservancy district, or political subdivision having jurisdiction and control over such water.

Effective Date: 03-04-1983

1547.20 Permission for conducting special water events.

No person or organization shall conduct any race, regatta, or other special event upon the waters in this state without first obtaining written permission, upon application not less than thirty days prior to the time of the proposed race, regatta, or event, of the federal agency, state department, conservancy district, or political subdivision having jurisdiction and control over such waters. Any state department, conservancy district, or political subdivision may suspend its respective rules during a race, regatta, or special event. Nothing in this section shall be construed to mean that the operator of a vessel competing in a specially authorized race, regatta, or special event shall not attempt to attain high speeds on a marked racing course.

On any waters in this state over which no federal agency, state department, conservancy district, or political subdivision has jurisdiction and control, no person or organization shall conduct any race, regatta, or other special event without first obtaining written permission, upon application not less than thirty days prior to the time of the proposed race, regatta, or event, of the chief of the division of watercraft. The chief may, if he determines that the public safety will be adequately protected, grant written permission for holding such race, regatta, or special event. This section does not apply to privately owned lakes or ponds nor to canoes or rowboats.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.21 Requirements for inflatable vessel.

No person shall use or offer for use on the waters in this state any inflatable vessel made of canvas, rubber, synthetic rubber, or vinyl plastic unless the inflatable vessel is of multiple air cell or compartment construction and is capable of remaining afloat if one air cell or compartment is punctured or collapsed.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.22 Restrictions on sitting, standing, walking on moving vessel.

No occupant of any vessel underway on the waters in this state shall sit, stand, or walk upon any portion of the vessel not specifically designed for that movement, except when immediately necessary for the safe and reasonable navigation or operation of the vessel. No operator of a vessel underway on the waters in this state shall allow any occupant of the vessel to sit, stand, or walk on any portion of the vessel underway not specifically designed for that use, except when immediately necessary for the safe and reasonable navigation or operation of the vessel.

No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.23 Warming-up engine.

The pilot or engineer of any powercraft for hire to carry passengers shall not permit passengers to come aboard before the engine of such powercraft has been permitted to run for a minimum of two minutes.

Effective Date: 08-05-1959

1547.24 Personal flotation devices required for child under 10.

No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel under eighteen feet in length while there is present in the vessel any person under ten years of age, not wearing a coast guard approved type one, two, three, or five personal flotation device in good and serviceable condition of appropriate size securely attached to the person under ten years of age.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990; 2008 SB271 06-13-2008

1547.25 Prohibiting operation without personal flotation device.

(A) No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel, other than a commercial vessel or other vessel exempted by rules adopted under section 1547.52 of the Revised Code, on the waters in this state:

(1) That is sixteen feet or greater in length without carrying aboard one type one, two, or three personal flotation device for each person aboard and one type four personal flotation device;

(2) That is less than sixteen feet in length, including canoes and kayaks of any length, without carrying aboard one type one, two, or three personal flotation device for each person aboard.

(B) A type five personal flotation device may be carried in lieu of a type one, two, or three personal flotation device required under division (A) of this section.

(C) No person shall operate or permit to be operated any commercial vessel on the waters in this state:

(1) That is less than forty feet in length and is not carrying persons for hire without carrying aboard at least one type one, two, or three personal flotation device for each person aboard;

(2) That is carrying persons for hire or is forty feet in length or longer and is not carrying persons for hire without carrying aboard at least one type one personal flotation device for each person aboard;

(3) That is twenty-six feet in length or longer without carrying aboard at least one type four ring life buoy in addition to the applicable requirements of divisions (C)(1) and (2) of this section.

(D) Each personal flotation device carried aboard a vessel, including a commercial vessel, pursuant to this section shall be coast guard approved and in good and serviceable condition, of appropriate size for the wearer, and readily accessible to each person aboard the vessel at all times.

(E) As used in this section, "commercial vessel" means any vessel used in the carriage of any person or property for a valuable consideration whether flowing directly or indirectly from the owner, partner, or agent or any other person interested in the vessel. "Commercial vessel" does not include any vessel that is manufactured or used primarily for noncommercial use or that is leased, rented, or chartered to another for noncommercial use.

Effective Date: 07-05-2002

1547.251 Use of approved distress signals or flags.

(A) No person shall operate on the waters of Lake Erie or the immediately connecting bays, harbors, and anchorage areas at any time a vessel that is sixteen or more feet in length or any vessel carrying six or fewer passengers for hire without carrying coast guard approved visual distress signals for both day and night use.

(B) No person shall operate upon the waters of Lake Erie or the immediately connecting bays, harbors, and anchorage areas during the period from sunset to sunrise according to local time any of the following without carrying coast guard approved visual distress signals for night use:

(1) A vessel less than sixteen feet in length;

(2) A vessel competing in an organized marine parade, race, regatta, or similar event;

(3) A manually propelled vessel;

(4) A sailboat less than twenty-six feet in length with completely open construction and without propulsion machinery.

(C) No person shall operate a vessel on the waters in this state other than Lake Erie or the immediately connecting bays, harbors, and anchorage areas unless the vessel carries either a distress flag at least two feet square and international orange in color or a coast guard approved daytime distress signal.

(D) No person shall display any distress signal unless a vessel or a person is in distress and in need of help.

(E) Divisions (A) and (C) of this section do not apply to any of the following:

(1) Vessels competing in an organized marine parade, race, regatta, or similar event;

(2) Manually propelled vessels;

(3) Sailboats less than twenty-six feet in length with completely open construction and without propulsion machinery.

(F) The distress signals required by this section shall be in good and serviceable condition, readily accessible, and of the type and quantities required by regulations adopted under 46 U.S.C. 4302 , as amended.

(G) No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.26 Requiring anchor and line.

All watercraft, except sailboats less than sixteen feet long having a cockpit depth of less than twelve inches and except canoes, shall carry an anchor and line of sufficient weight and length to anchor the watercraft securely. The chief of the division of watercraft, by rule, may exempt other types of watercraft from this section after determining that carrying such an anchor and line would constitute a hazard.

No person shall operate or permit to be operated any watercraft on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.27 Required fire extinguishers.

(A) Except those powercraft propelled by an electric motor and those less than twenty-six feet in length designed for use with an outboard motor, of open construction, and not carrying passengers for hire, all powercraft shall carry fire extinguishers as prescribed in this section. The fire extinguishers shall be capable of extinguishing a burning gasoline fire, shall be so placed as to be readily accessible and in such condition as to be ready for immediate and effective use, and shall comply with minimum or higher standards for such extinguishers then prevailing as prescribed by the United States coast guard.

(B) Class A and class 1 powercraft shall carry at least one B-1 fire extinguisher.

Class 2 powercraft shall carry at least two B-1 fire extinguishers or at least one B-2 fire extinguisher.

Class 3 powercraft shall carry at least three B-1 fire extinguishers, or at least one B-1 and one B-2 fire extinguishers.

A B-1 fire extinguisher is one containing a minimum of one and one-fourth gallons foam, four pounds carbon dioxide, two pounds dry chemical, two and one-half pounds halon, or another extinguishing material approved by the United States coast guard, in a quantity approved by the United States coast guard, for such use. A B-2 fire extinguisher is one containing a minimum of two and one-half gallons foam, fifteen pounds carbon dioxide, ten pounds dry chemical, ten pounds halon, or another extinguishing material approved by the United States coast guard, in a quantity approved by the United States coast guard, for such use.

(C) No person shall operate or permit to be operated on the waters in this state any powercraft that does not comply with this section.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.28 Backfire flame control device.

Every gasoline engine installed in a vessel after April 25, 1940, except an outboard motor, shall be equipped with an acceptable device to control backfire flame. The device shall comply with all of the following:

(A) Be securely attached to the air intake with a flame-tight connection;

(B) Be in proper working order;

(C) Be coast guard approved or comply with either SAE J1928 or UL 1111;

(D) Be marked to indicate approval or compliance under division (C) of this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1997

1547.29 Ventilation requirements.

All powercraft using gasoline or other liquid fuel having a flashpoint of less than 110 F. shall be provided with ventilation as follows:

(A) At least two ventilators fitted with cowls or their equivalent for the purpose of properly and efficiently ventilating the bilges of every engine and fuel tank compartment in order to remove any inflammable or explosive gases;

(B) Any type of ventilating system approved for use by the United States coast guard;

(C) The ventilation of the boat is not required where the greater portion of the bilges of the engine and fuel tank compartment is open to the natural atmosphere.

Effective Date: 09-04-1970

1547.30 Ordering storage of vessel or outboard motor left on private property.

(A) As used in this section and sections 1547.301 , 1547.302 , and 1547.304 of the Revised Code:

(1) "Vessel or outboard motor" excludes an abandoned junk vessel or outboard motor, as defined in section 1547.303 of the Revised Code, or any watercraft or outboard motor under section 4585.31 of the Revised Code.

(2) "Law enforcement agency" means any organization or unit comprised of law enforcement officers, as defined in section 2901.01 of the Revised Code.

(B)

(1) The sheriff of a county, chief of police of a municipal corporation, township, township police district, or joint police district, or other chief of a law enforcement agency, within the sheriff's or chief's respective territorial jurisdiction, upon complaint of any person adversely affected, may order into storage any vessel or outboard motor that has been left on private property, other than a private dock or mooring facility or structure, for at least seventy-two hours without the permission of the person having the right to the possession of the property. The sheriff or chief, upon complaint of the owner of a marine repair facility or place of storage, may order into storage any vessel or outboard motor that has been left at the facility or place of storage for a longer period than that agreed upon. The place of storage shall be designated by the sheriff or chief. When ordering a vessel or motor into storage under division (B)(1) of this section, a sheriff or chief, whenever possible, shall arrange for the removal of the vessel or motor by a private tow truck operator or towing company.

(2)

(a) Except as provided in division (B)(2)(d) of this section, no person, without the consent of the owner or other person authorized to give consent, shall moor, anchor, or tie a vessel or outboard motor at a private dock or mooring facility or structure owned by another person if the owner has posted, in a conspicuous manner, a prohibition against the mooring, anchoring, or tying of vessels or outboard motors at the dock, facility, or structure by any person not having the consent of the owner or other person authorized to give consent.

(b) If the owner of a private dock or mooring facility or structure has posted at the dock, facility, or structure, in a conspicuous manner, conditions and regulations under which the mooring, anchoring, or tying of vessels or outboard motors is permitted at the dock, facility, or structure, no person, except as provided in division (B)(2)(d) of this section, shall moor, anchor, or tie a vessel or outboard motor at the dock, facility, or structure in violation of the posted conditions and regulations.

(c) The owner of a private dock or mooring facility or structure may order towed into storage any vessel or outboard motor found moored, anchored, or tied in violation of division (B)(2)(a) or (b) of this section, provided that the owner of the dock, facility, or structure posts on it a sign that states that the dock, facility, or structure is private, is visible from all entrances to the dock, facility, or structure, and contains all of the following information:

(i) The information specified in division (B)(2)(a) or (b) of this section, as applicable;

(ii) A notice that violators will be towed and that violators are responsible for paying the cost of the towing;

(iii) The telephone number of the person from whom a towed vessel or outboard motor may be recovered, and the address of the place to which the vessel or outboard motor will be taken and the place from which it may be recovered.

(d) Divisions (B)(2)(a) and (b) of this section do not prohibit a person from mooring, anchoring, or tying a vessel or outboard motor at a private dock or mooring facility or structure if either of the following applies:

(i) The vessel or outboard motor is disabled due to a mechanical or structural malfunction, provided that the person immediately removes the vessel or outboard motor from the dock, facility, or structure when the malfunction is corrected or when a reasonable attempt has been made to correct it;

(ii) Weather conditions are creating an imminent threat to safe operation of the vessel or outboard motor, provided that the person immediately removes the vessel or outboard motor from the dock, facility, or structure when the weather conditions permit safe operation of the vessel or outboard motor.

(e) A person whose vessel or outboard motor is towed into storage under division (B)(2)(c) of this section either shall pay the costs of the towing of the vessel or outboard motor or shall reimburse the owner of the dock or mooring facility or structure for the costs that the owner incurs in towing the vessel or outboard motor.

(3) Subject to division (C) of this section, the owner of a vessel or motor that has been removed under division (B) of this section may recover the vessel or motor only in accordance with division (F) of this section.

(C) If the owner or operator of a vessel or outboard motor that has been ordered into storage under division (B) of this section arrives after the vessel or motor has been prepared for removal, but prior to its actual removal from the property, the owner or operator shall be given the opportunity to pay a fee of not more than one-half of the charge for the removal of vessels or motors under division (B) of this section that normally is assessed by the person who has prepared the vessel or motor for removal, in order to obtain release of the vessel or motor. Upon payment of that fee, the vessel or motor shall be released to the owner or operator, and upon its release, the owner or operator immediately shall move it so that it is not on the private property without the permission of the person having the right to possession of the property, or is not at the facility or place of storage without the permission of the owner, whichever is applicable.

(D) Each county sheriff, each chief of police of a municipal corporation, township, township police district, or joint police district, and each other chief of a law enforcement agency shall maintain a record of vessels or outboard motors that are ordered into storage under division (B)(1) of this section. The record shall include an entry for each such vessel or motor that identifies the vessel's hull identification number or serial number, if any, the vessel's or motor's make, model, and color, the location from which it was removed, the date and time of its removal, the telephone number of the person from whom it may be recovered, and the address of the place to which it has been taken and from which it may be recovered. Any information in the record that pertains to a particular vessel or motor shall be provided to any person who, pursuant to a statement the person makes either in person or by telephone, is identified as the owner or operator of the vessel or motor and requests information pertaining to its location.

(E) Any person who registers a complaint that is the basis of a sheriff's or chief's order for the removal and storage of a vessel or outboard motor under division (B)(1) of this section shall provide the identity of the law enforcement agency with which the complaint was registered to any person who, pursuant to a statement the person makes, is identified as the owner or operator of the vessel or motor and requests information pertaining to its location.

(F)

(1) The owner of a vessel or outboard motor that is ordered into storage under division (B) of this section may reclaim it upon payment of any expenses or charges incurred in its removal, in an amount not to exceed two hundred dollars, and storage, in an amount not to exceed five dollars per twenty-four-hour period, and upon presentation of proof of ownership, which may be evidenced by a certificate of title to the vessel or motor, certificate of United States coast guard documentation, or certificate of registration if the vessel or motor is not subject to titling under section 1548.01 of the Revised Code.

(2) If a vessel or outboard motor that is ordered into storage under division (B)(1) of this section remains unclaimed by the owner for thirty days, the procedures established by sections 1547.301 and 1547.302 of the Revised Code shall apply.

(3) If a vessel or outboard motor ordered into storage under division (B)(2) of this section remains unclaimed for seventy-two hours after being stored, the tow truck operator or towing company that removed the vessel or outboard motor shall provide notice of the removal and storage to the sheriff of a county, chief of police of a municipal corporation, township, township police district, or joint police district, or other chief of a law enforcement agency within whose territorial jurisdiction the vessel or outboard motor had been moored, anchored, or tied in violation of division (B)(2) of this section. The notice shall be in writing and include the vessel's hull identification number or serial number, if any, the vessel's or outboard motor's make, model, and color, the location from which it was removed, the date and time of its removal, the telephone number of the person from whom it may be recovered, and the address of the place to which it has been taken and from which it may be recovered.

Upon receipt of the notice, the sheriff or chief immediately shall cause a search to be made of the records of the division of watercraft to ascertain the owner and any lienholder of the vessel or outboard motor, and, if known, shall send notice to the owner and lienholder, if any, at the owner's and lienholder's last known address by certified mail, return receipt requested, that the vessel or outboard motor will be declared a nuisance and disposed of if not claimed not later than thirty days after the date of the mailing of the notice.

If the owner or lienholder makes no claim to the vessel or outboard motor within thirty days of the date of the mailing of the notice, the sheriff or chief shall file with the clerk of courts of the county in which the place of storage is located an affidavit showing compliance with the requirements of division (F)(3) of this section, and the vessel or outboard motor shall be disposed of in accordance with section 1547.302 of the Revised Code.

(G) No person shall remove, or cause the removal of, any vessel or outboard motor from private property other than in accordance with division (B) of this section or section 1547.301 of the Revised Code.

Amended by 129th General AssemblyFile No.28, HB 153, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2011.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.301 Ordering storage of vessel or motor left in sunken, beached, drifting or docked condition.

The sheriff of a county, chief of police of a municipal corporation, township, township police district, or joint police district, or other chief of a law enforcement agency, within the sheriff's or chief's respective territorial jurisdiction, or a state highway patrol trooper, upon notification to the sheriff or chief of such action and of the location of the place of storage, may order into storage any vessel or outboard motor that has been left in a sunken, beached, or drifting condition for any period of time, or in a docked condition, on a public street or other property open to the public, or upon or within the right-of-way of any waterway, road, or highway, for forty-eight hours or longer without notification to the sheriff or chief of the reasons for leaving the vessel or motor in any such place or condition. The sheriff or chief shall designate the place of storage of any vessel or motor ordered removed by the sheriff or chief.

The sheriff or chief shall immediately cause a search to be made of the records of the division of watercraft to ascertain the owner and any lienholder of a vessel or outboard motor ordered into storage by the sheriff or chief, and, if known, shall send notice to the owner and lienholder, if any, at the owner's or lienholder's last known address by certified mail, return receipt requested, that the vessel or motor will be declared a nuisance and disposed of if not claimed within ten days of the date of mailing of the notice. The owner or lienholder of the vessel or motor may reclaim it upon payment of any expenses or charges incurred in its removal and storage, and presentation of proof of ownership, which may be evidenced by a certificate of title to the vessel or motor, certificate of United States coast guard documentation, or certificate of registration if the vessel or motor is not subject to titling under section 1548.01 of the Revised Code.

If the owner or lienholder makes no claim to the vessel or outboard motor within ten days of the date of mailing of the notice, and if the vessel or motor is to be disposed of at public auction as provided in section 1547.302 of the Revised Code, the sheriff or chief shall file with the clerk of courts of the county in which the place of storage is located an affidavit showing compliance with the requirements of this section. Upon presentation of the affidavit, the clerk of courts shall without charge issue a salvage certificate of title, free and clear of all liens and encumbrances, to the sheriff or chief and shall send a copy of the affidavit to the chief of the division of watercraft. If the vessel or motor is to be disposed of to a marine salvage dealer or other facility as provided in section 1547.302 of the Revised Code, the sheriff or chief shall execute in triplicate an affidavit, as prescribed by the chief of the division of watercraft, describing the vessel or motor and the manner in which it was disposed of, and that all requirements of this section have been complied with. The sheriff or chief shall retain the original of the affidavit for the sheriff's or chief's records and shall furnish two copies to the marine salvage dealer or other facility. Upon presentation of a copy of the affidavit by the marine salvage dealer or other facility, the clerk of courts shall issue to such owner a salvage certificate of title, free and clear of all liens and encumbrances.

Whenever the marine salvage dealer or other facility receives an affidavit for the disposal of a vessel or outboard motor as provided in this section, such owner shall not be required to obtain an Ohio certificate of title to the vessel or motor in the owner's own name if the vessel or motor is dismantled or destroyed and both copies of the affidavit are delivered to the clerk of courts. Upon receipt of such an affidavit, the clerk of courts shall send one copy of it to the chief of the division of watercraft.

Amended by 129th General AssemblyFile No.28, HB 153, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2011.

Effective Date: 08-08-1991

1547.302 Disposing of unclaimed vessel or motor.

(A) Unclaimed vessels or outboard motors ordered into storage under division (B) of section 1547.30 or section 1547.301 of the Revised Code shall be disposed of at the order of the sheriff of the county, the chief of police of the municipal corporation, township, or township police district, or another chief of a law enforcement agency in any of the following ways:

(1) To a marine salvage dealer;

(2) To any other facility owned, operated, or under contract with the state or the county, municipal corporation, township, or other political subdivision;

(3) To a charitable organization, religious organization, or similar organization not used and operated for profit;

(4) By sale at public auction by the sheriff, the chief, or an auctioneer licensed under Chapter 4707. of the Revised Code, after giving notice of the auction by advertisement, published once a week for two consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county or as provided in section 7.16 of the Revised Code.

(B) Any moneys accruing from the disposition of an unclaimed vessel or motor that are in excess of the expenses resulting from the removal and storage of the vessel or motor shall be credited to the general revenue fund or to the general fund of the county, municipal corporation, township, or other political subdivision, as appropriate.

(C) As used in this section, "charitable organization" has the same meaning as in section 1716.01 of the Revised Code.

Amended by 129th General AssemblyFile No.28, HB 153, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2011.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.303 Disposing of abandoned vessel or motor.

(A) As used in this section and section 1547.304 of the Revised Code:

(1) "Abandoned junk vessel or outboard motor" means any vessel or outboard motor meeting all of the following requirements:

(a) It has been left on private property for at least seventy-two hours without the permission of the person having the right to the possession of the property; left in a sunken, beached, or drifting condition for any period of time; or left in a docked condition, on a public street or other property open to the public, or upon or within the right-of-way of any waterway, road, or highway, for forty-eight hours or longer without notification to the sheriff of the county, the chief of police of the municipal corporation, township, township police district, or joint police district, or other chief of a law enforcement agency, having territorial jurisdiction with respect to the location of the vessel or motor, of the reasons for leaving the vessel or motor in any such place or condition;

(b) It is three years old, or older;

(c) It is extensively damaged, such damage including but not limited to any of the following: missing deck, hull, transom, gunwales, motor, or outdrive;

(d) It is apparently inoperable;

(e) It has a fair market value of two hundred dollars or less.

(2) "Law enforcement agency" means any organization or unit comprised of law enforcement officers, as defined in section 2901.01 of the Revised Code.

(B) The sheriff of a county, chief of police of a municipal corporation, township, township police district, or joint police district, or other chief of a law enforcement agency, within the sheriff's or chief's respective territorial jurisdiction, or a state highway patrol trooper, upon notification to the sheriff or chief of such action, shall order any abandoned junk vessel or outboard motor to be photographed by a law enforcement officer. The officer shall record the make of vessel or motor, the hull identification number or serial number when available, and shall also detail the damage or missing equipment to substantiate the value of two hundred dollars or less. The sheriff or chief shall thereupon immediately dispose of the abandoned junk vessel or outboard motor to a marine salvage dealer or other facility owned, operated, or under contract to the state, the county, township, or municipal corporation for the destruction of such vessels or motors. The records and photographs relating to the abandoned junk vessel or outboard motor shall be retained by the law enforcement agency ordering the disposition of the vessel or motor for a period of at least two years. The law enforcement agency shall execute in quadruplicate an affidavit, as prescribed by the chief of the division of watercraft, describing the vessel or motor and the manner in which it was disposed of, and that all requirements of this section have been complied with, and shall sign and file the same with the clerk of courts of the county in which the vessel or motor was abandoned. The clerk of courts shall retain the original of the affidavit for the clerk's files, shall furnish one copy thereof to the chief of the division of watercraft, one copy to the marine salvage dealer or other facility handling the disposal of the vessel or motor, and one copy to the law enforcement agency ordering the disposal, who shall file such copy with the records and photographs relating to the disposal. Any moneys arising from the disposal of an abandoned junk vessel or outboard motor shall be credited to the general revenue fund, or to the general fund of the county, township, municipal corporation, or other political subdivision, as appropriate.

Notwithstanding section 1547.301 of the Revised Code, any vessel or outboard motor meeting the requirements of divisions (A)(1)(c) to (e) of this section which has remained unclaimed by the owner or lienholder for a period of ten days or longer following notification as provided in section 1547.301 of the Revised Code may be disposed of as provided in this section.

Amended by 129th General AssemblyFile No.28, HB 153, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2011.

Effective Date: 09-06-1996

1547.304 Abandoned junk vessel or outboard motor on private property.

No person shall purposely leave an abandoned junk vessel or outboard motor on private property for more than seventy-two hours without the permission of the person having the right to the possession of the property; in a sunken, beached, or drifting condition for any period of time; or in a docked condition, on a public street or other property open to the public, or upon or within the right-of-way of any waterway, road, or highway, for forty-eight hours or longer without notification to the sheriff of the county, chief of police of the municipal corporation, township, township police district, or joint police district, or other chief of a law enforcement agency, having territorial jurisdiction with respect to the location of the vessel or motor, of the reasons for leaving the vessel or motor in any such place or condition.

For purposes of this section, the fact that an abandoned junk vessel or outboard motor has been so left without permission or notification is prima-facie evidence of abandonment.

Nothing in sections 1547.30 , 1547.301 , and 1547.303 of the Revised Code invalidates the provisions of any ordinance of a municipal corporation regulating or prohibiting the abandonment of vessels or outboard motors on waterways, beaches, docks, streets, highways, public property, or private property within the boundaries of the municipal corporation.

Amended by 129th General AssemblyFile No.28, HB 153, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2011.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.31 Muffler or muffler system required - noise levels.

(A) Every powercraft operated on the waters in this state shall be equipped at all times with a muffler or a muffler system that is in good working order, in constant operation, and effectively installed to prevent excessive or unusual noise.

(B)

(1) No person shall operate or give permission for the operation of a powercraft on the waters in this state in such a manner as to exceed a noise level of ninety decibels on the "A" scale when subjected to a stationary sound level test as prescribed by SAE J2005.

(2) No person shall operate or give permission for the operation of a powercraft on the waters in this state in such a manner as to exceed a noise level of seventy-five decibels on the "A" scale measured as specified by SAE J1970. Measurement of a noise level of not more than seventy-five decibels on the "A" scale of a powercraft in operation does not preclude the conducting of a stationary sound level test as prescribed by SAE J2005.

(C) No person shall operate or give permission for the operation of a powercraft on the waters in this state that is equipped with an altered muffler or muffler cutout, or operate or give permission for the operation of a powercraft on the waters in this state in any manner that bypasses or otherwise reduces or eliminates the effectiveness of any muffler or muffler system installed in accordance with this section, unless the applicable mechanism has been permanently disconnected or made inoperable.

(D) No person shall remove, alter, or otherwise modify in any way a muffler or muffler system in a manner that will prevent it from being operated in accordance with this section.

(E) No person shall manufacture, sell, or offer for sale a powercraft that is not equipped with a muffler or muffler system that prevents noise levels in excess of those established in division (B)(1) of this section.

(F) This section does not apply to any of the following:

(1) A powercraft that is designed, manufactured, and sold for the sole purpose of competing in racing events. The exception established under division (F)(1) of this section shall be documented in each sale agreement and shall be acknowledged formally by the signatures of the buyer and the seller. The buyer and the seller shall maintain copies of the sale agreement. A copy of the sale agreement shall be kept aboard the powercraft when it is operated. A powercraft to which the exception established under division (F)(1) of this section applies shall be operated on the waters in this state only in accordance with division (F)(2) of this section.

(2) A powercraft that is actually participating in a sanctioned racing event or in tune-up periods for a sanctioned racing event on the waters in this state and that is being operated in accordance with division (F)(2) of this section. For the purposes of division (F)(2) of this section, a sanctioned racing event is a racing event that is conducted in accordance with section 1547.20 of the Revised Code or that is approved by the United States coast guard. The operator of a powercraft that is operated on the waters in this state for the purpose of a sanctioned racing event shall comply with that section and requirements established under it or with requirements established by the coast guard, as appropriate. Failure to comply subjects the operator to this section.

(3) A powercraft that is being operated on the waters in this state by or for a boat or engine manufacturer for the purpose of testing, development, or both and that complies with division (F)(3) of this section. The operator of such a powercraft shall have aboard at all times and shall produce on demand of a law enforcement officer a current, valid letter issued by the chief of the division of watercraft in accordance with rules adopted under division (I)(1) of this section. Failure to produce the letter subjects the operator to this section.

(G) A law enforcement officer who is trained in accordance with rules adopted under division (I)(2) of this section and who has reason to believe that a powercraft is not in compliance with the noise levels established in this section may direct the operator of the powercraft to submit it to an on-site test to measure the level of the noise emitted by the powercraft. The operator shall comply with that direction. The officer may remain aboard the powercraft during the test at the officer's discretion.

If the level of the noise emitted by the powercraft exceeds the noise levels established in this section, the officer may direct the operator to take immediate and reasonable measures to correct the violation, including returning the powercraft to a mooring and keeping it at the mooring until the violation is corrected or ceases.

(H) A law enforcement officer who conducts powercraft noise level tests pursuant to this section shall be trained to do so in accordance with rules adopted under division (I)(2) of this section.

(I) In accordance with Chapter 119. of the Revised Code, the chief shall adopt rules establishing both of the following:

(1) Requirements and procedures for the issuance of letters under division (F)(3) of this section. The rules shall require, without limitation, that each such letter adequately identify the powercraft concerning which the letter is issued and specify the purposes for which the powercraft is being operated.

(2) Requirements and procedures for the training of law enforcement officers who conduct powercraft noise level tests pursuant to this section. The rules shall require the training to include, without limitation, the selection of a site where noise level is measured and the calibration and use of noise measurement equipment.

Effective Date: 01-01-2000

1547.32 Vessel used as dwelling creating nuisance.

No person shall use any vessel for the purpose of establishing or maintaining a dwelling which creates a nuisance of either permanent or temporary nature on any of the waters in this state except Lake Erie, the Muskingum River, the Ohio River, and the immediately connected harbors and anchorage facilities or in such other areas as may be designated for the purpose.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.33 Restrictions on sink, toilet or sanitary system.

Except on the waters of Lake Erie, the Muskingum River, or the Ohio River, no person shall launch, moor, dock, use, operate, or permit to be operated on any of the waters in this state any vessel that contains a sink, toilet, or sanitary system that is capable of discharging urine, fecal matter, contents of a chemical commode, kitchen wastes, laundry wastes, slop sink drainage, or other household wastes into the waters in this state. Such a sink, toilet, or sanitary system shall be removed, sealed, or made to drain into a tank or reservoir that can be carried or pumped ashore for disposal in a sewage treatment works approved by the director of environmental protection.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.331 [Repealed].

Effective Date: 03-04-1983

1547.34 Violations prima facie evidence of negligence.

Violations of sections 1547.02 to 1547.36 of the Revised Code, which result in injury to persons or damage to property shall constitute prima-facie evidence of negligence in a civil action.

Effective Date: 03-04-1983

1547.35 [Repealed].

Effective Date: 11-01-1965

1547.36 Secretary of state agent for service of process.

The operation by a nonresident of a vessel upon the waters in this state, or the operation on the waters in this state of a vessel owned by a nonresident if operated with his consent, express or implied, shall be deemed equivalent to an appointment by the nonresident of the secretary of state to be his true and lawful attorney, upon whom may be served the summons in any action against him, growing out of any accident or collision in which the nonresident may be involved while operating a vessel on the waters in this state, or in which the vessel may be involved while being so operated on the waters in this state. The operation shall be deemed a signification of his agreement that any summons against him which is so served shall have the same legal force and validity as if served on him personally within this state. Service of summons shall be made by leaving a copy thereof with the secretary of state, or his deputy, who shall keep a record of each process and the day and hour of service and service shall be sufficient services upon the nonresident, if notice of the service and a copy of the summons are forthwith either served upon the defendant personally by the sheriff or constable of the county in which he resides or sent by certified mail by the plaintiff or his attorney to the defendant. If personal service of the notice and copy of summons is had upon the defendant, the officer making the service shall so certify in his return which shall be filed with the court having jurisdiction of the cause. If service is made by certified mail then the plaintiff or his attorney shall make an affidavit showing that he has made service of the notice and summons upon the defendant by certified mail and the affiant shall attach thereto a true copy of the summons and notice so served and the return receipt of the defendant and shall file the affidavit and attached papers with the court having jurisdiction of the cause. The court in which the action is pending may order such extension of time as may be necessary to afford the defendant reasonable opportunity to defend the action.

The death of a nonresident shall not operate to revoke the appointment by him of the secretary of state as his true and lawful attorney upon whom may be served the summons in an action against him growing out of any the accident or collision; and in the event of his death, any action growing out of such accident or collision may be commenced or prosecuted against his executor or administrator duly appointed by the state, territory, or districts of the United States or foreign country in which the nonresident resided at the time of his death, and service of the summons shall be made upon the secretary of state, and personal service of the notice and the copy of the summons be had upon his executor or administrator, as the case may be, in like manner, with the same force and effect as service upon the nonresident during his lifetime.

Any action or proceeding pending in any court of this state, in which the court has obtained jurisdiction of the nonresident pursuant to sections 1547.01 to 1547.36 of the Revised Code, shall not abate by reason of the death of the nonresident, but his executor or administrator duly appointed in the state, territory, or district of the United States or foreign country in which he resided at the time of his death, upon the application of the plaintiff in the action and upon such notice as the court may prescribe, shall be brought in and substituted in the place of the decedent and the action or proceeding shall continue.

The court shall include as taxable costs, in addition to other legal costs, against the plaintiff in case the defendant prevails in the action, the actual traveling expenses of the defendant from his residence to the place of trial and return, not to exceed the sum of one hundred dollars.

This section applies to actions commenced in all courts of this state having civil jurisdiction.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.37 [Repealed].

Effective Date: 01-01-1974

1547.38 Prohibiting rental of improperly equipped vessel.

No person who lets vessels for hire, or the agent or employee thereof, shall rent, lease, charter, or otherwise permit the use of a vessel, unless the person provides the vessel with the equipment required under sections 1547.25 , 1547.251 , 1547.26 , 1547.27 , 1547.28 , 1547.29 , and 1547.31 of the Revised Code and rules adopted under this chapter regarding the equipment of vessels, and complies with the requirements of sections 1547.24 , 1547.40 , 1547.53 , 1547.57 , and either 1547.54 or 1547.542 of the Revised Code and rules adopted under this chapter to implement and enforce those sections.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.39 Requiring capacity plate.

(A) No person, after January 1, 1977, shall manufacture, sell, or offer for sale any watercraft propelled by machinery as its principal source of power, or watercraft designed to be manually propelled, less than twenty feet in length, and designed to carry two or more persons, manufactured after that date, unless a capacity plate containing the correct information, as prescribed by regulations adopted by the United States coast guard, is firmly attached to the watercraft. The capacity plate shall be attached in such a location that it is clearly legible from the position designed or intended to be occupied by the operator when the watercraft is underway.

(B) No person shall operate or permit to be operated on the waters in this state watercraft for which a capacity plate is required under this section unless the capacity plate is attached.

(C) No person shall alter, remove, or deface any information contained on the capacity plate unless the manufacturer has altered the watercraft in such a way that would require a change in the information contained on the capacity plate.

(D) As used in this section, "manufacture" means to construct or assemble a watercraft, or to alter a watercraft in such a manner as to affect or change its weight capacity or occupant capacity.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.40 Exceeding capacity plate figures.

(A) No person shall operate or permit to be operated on the waters in this state a watercraft to which a capacity plate is attached if the total load exceeds the weight capacity indicated on the capacity plate, if the number of persons aboard exceeds the occupant capacity indicated on the capacity plate, or if the horsepower of any attached outboard motor exceeds the maximum horsepower indicated on the capacity plate.

(B) When no capacity plate exists, no person shall operate or permit to be operated on the waters in this state a watercraft if a reasonably prudent person would believe that either of the following circumstances applies:

(1) The total load aboard the watercraft has associated with it a risk of physical harm to persons or property;

(2) The total horsepower of any inboard engine or attached outboard motor has associated with it a risk of physical harm to persons or property.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.41 Personal watercraft operation requirements.

(A)

(1) No person shall operate or permit the operation of a personal watercraft unless each person on the watercraft is wearing a type one, two, three, or five personal flotation device.

(2) A person operating a personal watercraft that is equipped by the manufacturer with a lanyard type engine cutoff switch shall attach the lanyard to the person, the person's clothing, or the personal flotation device as appropriate for the specific watercraft.

(3) No person shall operate a personal watercraft at any time between sunset and sunrise.

(4) No person who owns a personal watercraft or who has charge over or control of a personal watercraft shall authorize or knowingly permit the personal watercraft to be operated in violation of this chapter.

(B) This section does not apply to a person who is participating in a regatta, race, marine parade, tournament, or exhibition that is operated in accordance with section 1547.20 of the Revised Code or that is coast guard approved.

Effective Date: 03-18-1997

1547.42 Amended and Renumbered RC 1547.40.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.49 Littering prohibited.

(A) As used in this section, "litter" means garbage, trash, waste, rubbish, ashes, cans, bottles, wire, paper, cartons, vessel parts, vehicle parts, furniture, glass, or anything else of an unsightly or unsanitary nature.

(B) No operator or occupant of a vessel shall, regardless of intent, throw, drop, discard, or deposit litter from any vessel in operation or control upon or in any waters in this state, except into a litter receptacle in a manner that prevents its being carried away or deposited by the elements.

(C) No operator of a vessel in operation upon any waters in this state shall allow litter to be thrown, dropped, discarded, or deposited from the vessel, except into a litter receptacle in a manner that prevents its being carried away or deposited by the elements.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.51 Division of watercraft - duties.

There is hereby created within the department of natural resources the division of watercraft. The division shall do all of the following:

(A) Administer and enforce all laws relative to the identification, numbering, registration, titling, use, and operation of vessels operated on the waters in this state ;

(B) Educate and inform the citizens of the state about, and promote, conservation, navigation, safety practices, and the benefits of recreational boating;

(C) Provide wild, scenic, and recreational river area conservation education and provide for corridor protection, restoration, habitat enhancement, and clean-up projects in wild river areas, scenic river areas, and recreational river areas;

(D) Provide for and assist in the development, maintenance, and operation of marine recreational facilities, docks, launching facilities, and harbors for the benefit of public navigation, recreation, or commerce if the chief of the division of watercraft determines that they are in the best interests of the state.

Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990; 04-06-2007

1547.52 Duties of chief of division.

(A) The division of watercraft shall be administered by the chief of the division of watercraft. The chief may adopt, amend, and rescind:

(1) Rules considered necessary by the chief to supplement the identification, operation, titling, use, registration, and numbering of watercraft or vessels as provided in this chapter and Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code;

(2) Rules governing the navigation of vessels on waters in this state, including, but not limited to, rules regarding steering and sailing, the conduct of vessels in sight of one another or in restricted visibility, lights and shapes of lights used on vessels, and sound and light signals. As the chief considers necessary, these navigational rules shall be consistent with and equivalent to the regulations and interpretive rulings governing inland waters adopted or issued under the "Inland Navigational Rules Act of 1980," 94 Stat. 3415, 33 U.S.C.A. 151, 1604, 1605, 1608, 2001 to 2008, and 2071 to 2073.

(3) Rules governing the use, visitation, protection, and administration of wild river areas, scenic river areas, and recreational river areas;

(4) Rules governing vessel safety inspection checkpoints, including procedures that comply with statutory and constitutional provisions governing searches and seizures by law enforcement officers;

(5) Rules establishing fees and charges for all of the following:

(a) Boating skill development classes and other educational classes;

(b) Law enforcement services provided at special events when the services are in addition to normal enforcement duties;

(c) Inspections of vessels or motors conducted under this chapter or Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code;

(d) The conducting of stream impact reviews of any planned or proposed construction, modification, renovation, or development project that may potentially impact a watercourse within a designated wild, scenic, or recreational river area.

All rules adopted by the chief under division (A) of this section shall be adopted in accordance with Chapter 119. of the Revised Code and are subject to the prior approval of the director of natural resources.

(B) The chief, with the approval of the director, may employ such clerical and technical help as the chief considers necessary.

(C) The chief may designate license agents with the approval of the director.

(D) The division is hereby designated as the agency to administer the Ohio boating safety program and allocated federal funds under, and the chief shall prepare and submit reports in such form as may be required by, the "Federal Boat Safety Act of 1971," 85 Stat. 222, 46 U.S.C.A. 1475(a)(6), as amended.

(E) The chief may sell any of the following:

(1) Items related to or that promote boating safety, including, but not limited to, pins, badges, books, bulletins, maps, publications, calendars, and other educational articles;

(2) Artifacts pertaining to boating;

(3) Confiscated or forfeited items;

(4) Surplus equipment.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 26, HB 29, §1, eff. 7/10/2013.

Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.521 State watercraft officers - duties.

(A) The law enforcement officers of the division of watercraft shall be known as "state watercraft officers." The chief of the division of watercraft and state watercraft officers:

(1) Shall develop and conduct educational programs in vessel safety, sanitation, and operation and in other related subjects that the chief considers appropriate or necessary;

(2) Shall enforce this chapter and Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code and rules adopted under them, and may enforce laws prohibiting the dumping of refuse, trash, or litter into the waters in this state and Chapters 2925. and 3719. of the Revised Code on all waters in the state;

(3) On any lands owned, controlled, maintained, or administered by the department of natural resources and on any waters in this state, shall have the authority specified under section 2935.03 of the Revised Code for peace officers of the department of natural resources to keep the peace, to enforce all laws and rules governing those lands and waters, and to make arrests for violation of those laws and rules, provided that the authority shall be exercised on lands or waters administered by another division of the department only pursuant to an agreement with the chief of that division or to a request for assistance by an enforcement officer of that division in an emergency. The jurisdiction of state watercraft officers shall be concurrent with that of the peace officers of the county, township, or municipal corporation in which the violation occurs.

(4)

May serve and execute any citation, summons, warrant, or other process issued with respect to any law that they have the authority to enforce.

(B)

(1) Except as authorized by division (B)(2) of this section, no state watercraft officer or other law enforcement officer as described in section 1547.63 of the Revised Code shall stop or board any vessel solely for the purpose of conducting a safety inspection of the vessel unless the owner or operator voluntarily requests the watercraft officer or other law enforcement officer to conduct a safety inspection of the vessel.

(2) A state watercraft officer or other law enforcement officer as described in section 1547.63 of the Revised Code may stop, board, and conduct a safety inspection of any vessel for the purpose of enforcing the laws and rules that the officer has the authority to enforce under this chapter, if either of the following applies:

(a) The watercraft officer or law enforcement officer authorized under section 1547.63 of the Revised Code has a reasonable suspicion that the vessel, the vessel's equipment, or the vessel's operator is in violation of this chapter or rules adopted under it or is otherwise engaged in a violation of a law of this state or a local ordinance, resolution, rule, or regulation adopted in compliance with the provisions of this chapter within the territorial jurisdiction of the officer;

(b) The watercraft officer or law enforcement officer authorized under section 1547.63 of the Revised Code is conducting a vessel safety inspection in the course of an authorized checkpoint operation in accordance with rules adopted by the chief of the division of watercraft under section 1547.52 of the Revised Code.

(C) A state watercraft officer may render assistance to a state or local law enforcement officer at the request of that officer or may render assistance to a state or local law enforcement officer in the event of an emergency.

State watercraft officers serving outside the division of watercraft under this section or serving under the terms of a mutual aid compact authorized under section 1501.02 of the Revised Code shall be considered as performing services within their regular employment for the purposes of compensation, pension or indemnity fund rights, workers' compensation, and other rights or benefits to which they may be entitled as incidents of their regular employment.

State watercraft officers serving outside the division of watercraft under this section or under a mutual aid compact retain personal immunity from civil liability as specified in section 9.86 of the Revised Code and shall not be considered an employee of a political subdivision for purposes of Chapter 2744. of the Revised Code. A political subdivision that uses state watercraft officers under this section or under the terms of a mutual aid compact authorized under section 1501.02 of the Revised Code is not subject to civil liability under Chapter 2744. of the Revised Code as the result of any action or omission of any state watercraft officer acting under this section or under a mutual aid compact.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 26, HB 29, §1, eff. 7/10/2013.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.522 State watercraft officer's bond - uniform and badge.

(A) Each state watercraft officer, upon his appointment and before entering upon his duties, shall execute a bond in a sum not less than one thousand dollars.

(B) The chief of the division of watercraft shall prescribe a uniform and badge, which shall be worn by each state watercraft officer while on duty, except as otherwise ordered by the chief.

Effective Date: 08-15-1973

1547.523 Felony conviction precludes or terminates employment.

(A) As used in this section, "felony" has the same meaning as in section 109.511 of the Revised Code.

(B)

(1) The chief of the division of watercraft shall not appoint a person as a state watercraft officer on a permanent basis, on a temporary basis, for a probationary term, or on other than a permanent basis if the person previously has been convicted of or has pleaded guilty to a felony.

(2)

(a) The chief of the division of watercraft shall terminate the employment of a state watercraft officer who does either of the following:

(i) Pleads guilty to a felony;

(ii) Pleads guilty to a misdemeanor pursuant to a negotiated plea agreement as provided in division (D) of section 2929.43 of the Revised Code in which the state watercraft officer agrees to surrender the certificate awarded to that officer under section 109.77 of the Revised Code.

(b) The chief shall suspend from employment a state watercraft officer who is convicted, after trial, of a felony. If the state watercraft officer files an appeal from that conviction and the conviction is upheld by the highest court to which the appeal is taken or if the state watercraft officer does not file a timely appeal, the chief shall terminate the employment of that state watercraft officer. If the state watercraft officer files an appeal that results in the state watercraft officer's acquittal of the felony or conviction of a misdemeanor, or in the dismissal of the felony charge against the state watercraft officer, the chief shall reinstate that state watercraft officer. A state watercraft officer who is reinstated under division (B)(2)(b) of this section shall not receive any back pay unless that state watercraft officer's conviction of the felony was reversed on appeal, or the felony charge was dismissed, because the court found insufficient evidence to convict the state watercraft officer of the felony.

(3) Division (B) of this section does not apply regarding an offense that was committed prior to January 1, 1997.

(4) The suspension from employment, or the termination of the employment, of a state watercraft officer under division (B)(2) of this section shall be in accordance with Chapter 119. of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 01-01-2004

1547.53 Numbering of watercraft - exemptions.

Every watercraft operated on the waters in this state shall be numbered by this state in accordance with federal law or a federally approved numbering system of another state. A watercraft numbered by this state shall display the number on the watercraft as provided in section 1547.57 of the Revised Code. Watercraft exempt from numbering by the state are:

(A) Those currently documented by the United States coast guard or its successor;

(B) Those whose principal use is not on the waters in this state and that have not been used within this state for more than sixty days and have a valid number assigned under a federally approved numbering system by another state if the number is displayed in accordance with the requirements of that system and the certificate of number is available for inspection whenever the watercraft is on waters in this state;

(C) Those from a country other than the United States, temporarily using the waters in this state;

(D) Those whose owner is the United States, a state, or a political subdivision of a state, that fit either of the following descriptions, and that are clearly identifiable as such:

(1) A powercraft that principally is used for governmental purposes other than recreational purposes;

(2) A watercraft other than a powercraft.

(E) A ship's lifeboat. As used in this division, "lifeboat" means a watercraft that is held aboard another vessel and used exclusively for emergency purposes.

(F) Those that have been exempted from numbering by the chief of the division of watercraft after the chief has found that the numbering of the watercraft will not materially aid in their identification and, if an agency of the United States has a numbering system applicable to the watercraft, after the chief has further found that they also would be exempt from numbering by the United States government if they were subject to the federal law;

(G) Those temporarily using the waters in this state under a waiver issued by the chief to an organization sponsoring a race, regatta, or special event. The chief may issue a waiver upon application by the sponsoring organization at least fifteen days before the date of the proposed race, regatta, or special event. The waiver shall be effective for ten days including the day or days of the proposed race, regatta, or special event. Such a waiver does not obviate the need for compliance with section 1547.20 of the Revised Code.

(H) Canoes, rowboats, and inflatable watercraft that are registered under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code and that an owner, in accordance with this division, chooses not to have numbered under this section. An owner of a canoe, rowboat, or inflatable watercraft may choose to do either of the following:

(1) Have it numbered under this section, pay a lesser registration fee under division (A)(2)(a) of section 1547.54 of the Revised Code, and obtain square tags under division (A) of section 1547.57 of the Revised Code;

(2) Not have it numbered under this section, pay a higher registration fee under division (A)(2)(b) of section 1547.54 of the Revised Code, and obtain a rectangular tag under division (C) of section 1547.57 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 07-05-2002

1547.531 Registration and documentation - exemptions.

(A)

(1) Except as provided in division (A)(2) or (B) of this section, no person shall operate or give permission for the operation of any watercraft on the waters in this state unless the watercraft is registered in the name of the current owner in accordance with section 1547.54 of the Revised Code, and the registration is valid and in effect.

(2) On and after January 1, 1999, if a watercraft that is required to be issued a certificate of title under Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code is transferred to a new owner, it need not be registered under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code for forty-five days following the date of the transfer, provided that the new owner purchases a temporary watercraft registration under division (A) of this section or holds a bill of sale from a watercraft dealer.

For the purposes of division (A)(2) of this section, a temporary watercraft registration or a bill of sale from a watercraft dealer shall contain at least all of the following information:

(a) The hull identification number or serial number of the watercraft;

(b) The make of the watercraft;

(c) The length of the watercraft;

(d) The type of propulsion, if any;

(e) The state in which the watercraft principally is operated;

(f) The name of the owner;

(g) The address of the owner, including the zip code;

(h) The signature of the owner;

(i) The date of purchase;

(j) A notice to the owner that the temporary watercraft registration expires forty-five days after the date of purchase of the watercraft or that the watercraft cannot be operated on the waters in this state solely under the bill of sale beginning forty-five days after the date of purchase of the watercraft, as applicable.

(3) A person may purchase a temporary watercraft registration from the chief of the division of watercraft or from an authorized agent designated under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code. The chief shall furnish forms for temporary watercraft registrations to authorized agents. In addition to completing the registration form with the information specified in divisions (A)(2)(a) to (i) of this section, the person shall pay one of the applicable fees required under divisions (A)(2)(a) to (g) of section 1547.54 of the Revised Code as provided in that section.

Moneys received for the payment of temporary watercraft registrations shall be deposited to the credit of the waterways safety fund created in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code.

(4) In addition to the applicable fee required under division (A)(3) of this section, the chief or an authorized agent shall charge an additional writing fee of three dollars for a temporary watercraft registration that the chief or the authorized agent issues. When the temporary watercraft registration is issued by an authorized agent, the agent may retain the additional writing fee. When the temporary watercraft registration is issued by the chief, the additional writing fee shall be deposited to the credit of the waterways safety fund.

(5) A person who purchases a temporary watercraft registration for a watercraft and who subsequently applies for a registration certificate under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code need not pay the fee required under division (A)(2) of that section for the initial registration certificate issued for that watercraft, provided that at the time of application for the registration certificate, the person furnishes proof of payment for the temporary watercraft registration.

(6) A person who purchases a temporary watercraft registration, who subsequently applies for a registration certificate under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code, and who is exempt from payment for the registration certificate under division (P) of that section may apply to the chief for a refund of the amount paid for the temporary watercraft registration at the time that the person applies for a registration certificate. The chief shall refund that amount upon issuance to the person of a registration certificate.

(7) All records of the division of watercraft made or maintained for the purposes of divisions (A)(2) to (8) of this section are public records. The records shall be available for inspection at reasonable hours and in a manner that is compatible with normal operations of the division.

(8) Pursuant to division (A)(1) of section 1547.52 of the Revised Code, the chief may adopt rules establishing all of the following:

(a) Record-keeping requirements governing the issuance of temporary watercraft registrations and the use of bills of sale from watercraft dealers for the purposes of division (A)(2) of this section;

(b) Procedures and requirements for the refund of fees under division (A)(6) of this section;

(c) Any other procedures and requirements necessary for the administration and enforcement of divisions (A)(2) to (8) of this section.

(B) All of the following watercraft are exempt from registration:

(1) Those that are exempt from numbering by the state under divisions (B) to (G) of section 1547.53 of the Revised Code;

(2) Those that have been issued a commercial documentation by the United States coast guard or its successor and are used exclusively for commercial purposes;

(3) Those that have been documented by the United States coast guard or its successor as temporarily transitting, whose principal use is not on the waters in this state, and that have not been used within this state for more than sixty days.

(C) No person shall operate a watercraft documented by the United States coast guard or its successor unless the certificate of documentation is valid, is on the watercraft for which it has been issued, and is available for inspection whenever the watercraft is in operation. In accordance with 46 C.F.R. part 67, as amended, the watercraft shall display the official number, the vessel name, and the home port listed on the certificate of documentation.

(D)

(1) For the purposes of this section and section 1547.53 of the Revised Code, a watercraft is principally using the waters in this state if any of the following applies:

(a) The owner resides in this state and declares that the watercraft principally is using the waters in this state.

(b) The owner resides in another state, but declares that the watercraft principally is using the waters in this state.

(c) The watercraft is registered in another state or documented by the United States coast guard and is used within this state for more than sixty days regardless of whether it has been assigned a seasonal or permanent mooring at any public or private docking facility in this state.

(2) Notwithstanding division (D)(1)(c) of this section, a person on active duty in the armed forces of the United States may register a watercraft in the person's state of permanent residence in lieu of registering it in this state regardless of the number of days that the watercraft is used in this state.

Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 07-05-2002

1547.532 Vessels exempt from registration.

(A) All of the following are exempt from registration under this chapter:

(1) Sailboards;

(2) Kiteboards;

(3) Paddleboards;

(4) Belly boats or float tubes.

(B) As used in this section:

(1) "Belly boat" or "float tube" means a vessel that is inflatable, propelled solely by human muscular effort without using an oar, paddle, or pole, and designed to accommodate a single individual as an operator in such a manner that the operator remains partially submerged in the water.

(2) "Kiteboard" means a recreational vessel that is inherently buoyant, has no cockpit, and is operated by an individual who is standing on the vessel while using a kite as a means of propulsion and lift.

(3) "Paddleboard" means a recreational vessel that is inherently buoyant, is propelled by human muscular effort using a pole or single- or double-bladed paddle, and is operated by an individual who is kneeling, standing, or lying on the vessel.

(4) "Sailboard" means a recreational vessel that is inherently buoyant, has no cockpit, has a single sail mounted on a mast that is connected to the vessel by a free-rotating, flexible joint, and is operated by an individual who is standing on the vessel.

Added by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2013.

1547.54 Applying for registration certificate.

(A)

(1) Except as otherwise provided in section 1547.542 of the Revised Code, the owner of every watercraft requiring registration under this chapter shall file an application for a triennial registration certificate with the chief of the division of watercraft on forms that shall be provided by the chief or by an electronic means approved by the chief. The application shall be signed by the following:

(a) If the watercraft is owned by two persons under joint ownership with right of survivorship established under section 2131.12 of the Revised Code, by both of those persons as owners of the watercraft. The signatures may be done by electronic signature if the owners themselves are renewing the registration and there are no changes in the registration information since the issuance of the immediately preceding registration certificate. In all other instances, the signatures shall be done manually.

(b) If the watercraft is owned by a minor, by the minor and a parent or legal guardian. The signatures may be done by electronic signature if the parent or legal guardian and the minor themselves are renewing the registration and there are no changes in the registration information since the issuance of the immediately preceding registration certificate. In all other instances, the signatures shall be done manually.

(c) In all other cases, by the owner of the watercraft. The signature may be done by electronic signature if the owner is renewing the registration personally and there are no changes in the registration information since the issuance of the immediately preceding registration certificate. In all other instances, the signatures shall be done manually.

(2) An application for a triennial registration of a watercraft filed under division (A)(1) of this section shall be accompanied by the following fee:

(a) For canoes, rowboats, and inflatable watercraft that are numbered under section 1547.53 of the Revised Code, twelve dollars;

(b) For canoes, row boats, and inflatable watercraft that are not numbered under section 1547.53 of the Revised Code, seventeen dollars;

(c) For class A watercraft, including motorized canoes, thirty dollars;

(d) For class 1 watercraft, forty-five dollars;

(e) For class 2 watercraft, sixty dollars;

(f) For class 3 watercraft, seventy-five dollars;

(g) For class 4 watercraft, ninety dollars.

(3) For the purpose of registration, any watercraft operated by means of power, sail, or any other mechanical or electrical means of propulsion, except motorized canoes, shall be registered by length as prescribed in this section.

(4) If an application for registration is filed by two persons as owners under division (A)(1)(a) of this section, the person who is listed first on the title shall serve as and perform the duties of the "owner" and shall be considered the person "in whose name the watercraft is registered" for purposes of divisions (B) to (R) of this section and for purposes of all other sections in this chapter.

(B) All registration certificates issued under this section are valid for three years and are renewable on a triennial basis unless sooner terminated or discontinued in accordance with this chapter. The renewal date shall be printed on the registration certificate. A registration certificate may be renewed by the owner in the manner prescribed by the chief. All fees shall be charged according to a proration of the time remaining in the registration cycle to the nearest year.

(C) In addition to the fees set forth in this section, the chief, or any authorized agent, shall charge an additional writing fee of three dollars for any registration certificate the chief or authorized agent issues. When the registration certificate is issued by an authorized agent, the additional writing fee of three dollars shall be retained by the issuing agent. When the registration certificate is issued by the chief, the additional writing fee of three dollars shall be deposited to the credit of the waterways safety fund established in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code.

(D) In addition to the fees established in this section, watercraft that are not powercraft shall be charged a waterways conservation assessment fee of five dollars. The fee shall be collected at the time of the issuance of a triennial watercraft registration under division (A)(2) of this section and deposited in the state treasury and credited to a distinct account in the waterways safety fund created in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code.

(E)

(1) Upon receipt of the application in approved form, the chief shall enter the same upon the records of the office of the division of watercraft, assign a number to the watercraft if a number is required under section 1547.53 of the Revised Code, and issue to the applicant a registration certificate. If a number is assigned by the chief, it shall be set forth on the certificate. The registration certificate shall be on the watercraft for which it is issued and available at all times for inspection whenever the watercraft is in operation, except that livery operators may retain the registration certificate at the livery where it shall remain available for inspection at all times and except as otherwise provided in division (E)(2) of this section.

(2) A person who is operating on the waters of this state a canoe, rowboat, or inflatable watercraft that has not been numbered under section 1547.53 of the Revised Code and who is stopped by a law enforcement officer in the enforcement of this chapter or rules adopted under it shall present to the officer, not later than seventy-two hours after being stopped, a registration certificate. The registration certificate shall have been obtained under this section for the canoe, rowboat, or inflatable watercraft prior to the time that it was stopped. Failure of the person to present the registration certificate within seventy-two hours constitutes prima-facie evidence of a violation of this section.

(F) No person shall issue or be issued a registration certificate for a watercraft that is required to be issued a certificate of title under Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code except upon presentation of a certificate of title for the watercraft as provided in that chapter, proof of current documentation by the United States coast guard, a renewal registration form provided by the division of watercraft, or a certificate of registration issued under this section that has expired if there is no change in the ownership or description of the watercraft.

(G) Whenever the ownership of a watercraft changes, a new application form together with the prescribed fee shall be filed with the chief or the chief's agent and a new registration certificate shall be issued. The application shall be signed manually by the person or persons specified in divisions (A)(1)(a) to (c) of this section and shall be accompanied by a two-dollar transfer fee. Any remaining time on the registration shall be transferred. An authorized agent of the chief shall charge an additional writing fee of three dollars, which shall be retained by the issuing agent. If the certificate is issued by the chief, an additional writing fee of three dollars for each certificate issued shall be collected and deposited to the credit of the waterways safety fund.

(H) If an agency of the United States has in force an overall system of identification numbering for watercraft or certain types of watercraft within the United States, the numbering system employed by the division shall be in conformity with that system.

(I)

(1) The chief may assign any registration certificates to any authorized agent for the assignment of the registration certificates. If a person accepts that authorization, the person may be assigned a block of numbers and certificates that upon assignment, in conformity with this chapter and Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code and with rules of the division, shall be valid as if assigned directly by the division. Any person so designated as an agent by the chief shall post with the division security as may be required by the director of natural resources. The chief may issue an order temporarily or permanently restricting or suspending an agent's authorization without a hearing if the chief finds that the agent has violated this chapter or Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code, rules adopted under them, or any agreements prescribed by the chief.

(2) A clerk of the court of common pleas may apply for designation as an authorized agent of the chief. The division shall accept the clerk's bond that is required under section 2303.02 of the Revised Code for any security that is required for agents under this division, provided that the bond includes a rider or other provision specifically covering the clerk's duties as an authorized agent of the chief.

(J) All records of the division made or kept pursuant to this section shall be public records. Those records shall be available for inspection at reasonable hours and in a manner compatible with normal operations of the division.

(K) The owner shall furnish the division notice within fifteen days of the following:

(1) The transfer, other than through the creation of a security interest in any watercraft, of all or any part of the owner's interest or, if the watercraft is owned by two persons under joint ownership with right of survivorship established under section 2131.12 of the Revised Code, of all or any part of the joint interest of either of the two persons. The transfer shall not terminate the registration certificate.

(2) Any change in the address appearing on the certificate . As a part of the notification, the owner shall furnish the chief with the owner's new address.

(3) The destruction or abandonment of the watercraft.

(L) The chief may issue duplicate registration certificates or duplicate tags to owners of currently registered watercraft, the fee for which shall be four dollars.

(M) If the chief finds that a registration certificate previously issued to an owner is in error to a degree that would impair its basic purpose and use, the chief may issue a corrected certificate to the owner without charge.

(N) No authorized agent shall issue and no person shall receive or accept from an authorized agent a registration certificate assigned to the authorized agent under division (I) of this section unless the exact month, day, and year of issue are plainly written on the certificate by the agent. Certificates issued with incorrect dates of issue are void from the time they are issued.

(O) The chief, in accordance with Chapter 119. of the Revised Code, shall adopt rules governing the renewal of watercraft registrations by electronic means.

(P) As used in this section:

(1) "Disabled veteran" means a person who is included in either of the following categories:

(a) Because of a service-connected disability, has been or is awarded funds for the purchase of a motor vehicle under the "Disabled Veterans' and Servicemen's Automobile Assistance Act of 1970," 84 Stat. 1998, 38 U.S.C. 1901 , and amendments thereto;

(b) Has a service-connected disability rated at one hundred per cent by the veterans administration.

(2) "Prisoner of war" means any regularly appointed, enrolled, enlisted, or inducted member of the military forces of the United States who was captured, separated, and incarcerated by an enemy of the United States at any time, and any regularly appointed, enrolled, or enlisted member of the military forces of Great Britain, France, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Greece, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, South Africa, or the republics formerly associated with the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics or Yugoslavia who was a citizen of the United States at the time of the appointment, enrollment, or enlistment, and was captured, separated, and incarcerated by an enemy of this country during World War II.

(Q) Any disabled veteran, congressional medal of honor awardee, or prisoner of war may apply to the chief for a certificate of registration, or for a renewal of the certificate of registration, without the payment of any fee required by this section. The application for a certificate of registration shall be accompanied by evidence of disability or by documentary evidence in support of a congressional medal of honor that the chief requires by rule. The application for a certificate of registration by any person who has been a prisoner of war shall be accompanied by written evidence in the form of a record of separation, a letter from one of the armed forces of a country listed in division (P)(2) of this section, or other evidence that the chief may require by rule, that the person was honorably discharged or is currently residing in this state on active duty with one of the branches of the armed forces of the United States, or was a prisoner of war and was honorably discharged or received an equivalent discharge or release from one of the armed forces of a country listed in division (P)(2) of this section.

(R) Annually by the fifteenth day of January, the director of natural resources shall determine the amount of fees that would have been collected in the prior calendar year for each certificate of registration issued or renewed pursuant to division (Q) of this section and shall certify the total amount of foregone revenue to the director of budget and management for reimbursement. The director of budget and management shall transfer the amount certified from the general revenue fund to the waterways safety fund .

Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 07-23-2002; 04-06-2007

1547.541 Historic watercraft identification plates.

The owner of a watercraft that is more than twenty-five years old, is essentially as originally constructed, and is owned primarily as a collector's item and for participation in club activities, exhibitions, tours, parades, and similar uses, but is not used for general recreation may apply to the chief of the division of watercraft for an historic watercraft identification plate. The chief, by rule, may establish additional criteria for the registration of historic watercraft that the chief considers necessary.

The chief shall prescribe the form of application and shall issue an historic watercraft identification plate, which shall be securely affixed to the watercraft. The plate shall bear no date, but shall bear the inscription "historic watercraft." A registration number assigned by the chief shall be shown on the plate. The plate is valid without renewal as long as the watercraft exists and ownership does not change. The fee for the plate is twenty-five dollars.

Whenever the ownership of an historic watercraft changes, an application for transfer of registration, together with a fee of ten dollars, shall be filed with the division of watercraft, and a new certificate of registration shall be issued.

The historic watercraft identification plate shall be shown on the watercraft in the same manner as a number required under sections 1547.53 and 1547.57 of the Revised Code.

If the watercraft is to be used for general recreation, it also shall be registered as required by section 1547.54 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 03-18-1997; 04-06-2007

1547.542 Annual certificate of livery registration.

(A) Any person or organization owning any number of canoes, rowboats, inflatable watercraft, or sailboats for the purpose of rental to the public may apply with the chief of the division of watercraft for and receive an annual certificate of livery registration. No watercraft shall be rented to the public from a livery or other place of business in this state unless it first has been numbered and registered in accordance with this section or section 1547.54 of the Revised Code. Certificates of livery registration shall be issued by an authorized agent who is selected by the chief from among those designated under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code. The certificate shall display all of the following:

(1) The name of the owner of the livery ;

(2) The date of issuance ;

(3) The date of expiration ;

(4) The number of watercraft registered ;

(5) The fee paid ;

(6) An authorized facsimile of the signature of the chief provided by the authorized agent who is selected to issue the certificate ;

(7) The signature of the livery owner ;

(8) The livery watercraft registration number assigned to the livery owner.

The owner of the livery shall be issued a tag for each watercraft that has been registered in accordance with this section. The tag shall be affixed to each such watercraft in accordance with this section prior to the watercraft's being rented to the public. The chief shall prescribe the content and form of the tag in rules adopted under section 1547.52 of the Revised Code.

The owner of a livery shall obtain an amended certificate of livery registration from the chief whenever the composition of the fleet changes.

(B) Not later than March 15, 2015, the owner of a livery shall identify each watercraft in the fleet for which a certificate of registration has been issued under this section in one of the following ways:

(1) By displaying the livery watercraft registration number assigned to the livery owner on the forward half of both sides of the watercraft in block characters that are of a single color that contrasts with the color of the hull and are at least three inches in height. The livery watercraft registration number shall be displayed in such a manner that the number is visible under normal operating conditions. In addition, the tag that has been issued to the watercraft under this section shall be placed not more than six inches from the livery watercraft registration number on the port side of the watercraft.

(2) By displaying the livery name on the rear half of the watercraft in such a manner that it is clearly visible under normal operating conditions. If there is insufficient space or it is impractical to display the livery name on the sides of the watercraft, the livery name may be displayed on the rear half of the watercraft's deck, provided that the display of the name does not interfere with the placement of the tag that has been issued to the watercraft. In addition, the tag shall be placed in one of the following locations:

(a) In the upper right corner of the transom so that the tag does not interfere with the legibility of the hull identification number of the watercraft;

(b) Six inches from the stern on the outside of the watercraft below the port side gunwale;

(c) On the inside of the watercraft on the upper portion of the starboard side gunwale so that the tag is visible from the port side of the watercraft;

(d) On a deck on the rear half of the watercraft.

For purposes of division (B) of this section, each watercraft in a livery fleet shall be identified in a uniform and consistent manner.

(C) The fee for each watercraft registered under this section shall be an annual registration fee. The fee shall be one-third of the triennial registration fees prescribed in section 1547.54 of the Revised Code. However, if the size of the fleet does not increase, the fee for an amended certificate of livery registration shall be the fee prescribed for issuing a duplicate registration certificate under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code, and the chief shall not refund to the livery owner all or any portion of an annual registration fee applicable to a watercraft transferred or abandoned by the livery owner. If the size of the fleet increases, the livery owner shall be required to pay the applicable annual registration fee for each watercraft registered under an amended certificate of livery registration that is in excess of the number of watercraft contained in the annual certificate of livery registration.

In addition to the fees established in this section, watercraft that are not powercraft shall be charged a waterways conservation assessment fee. The fee shall be collected at the time of the issuance of an annual livery registration under this section and shall be one dollar and fifty cents for each watercraft included in the registration. The fee shall be deposited in the state treasury and credited to a distinct account in the waterways safety fund created in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code.

(D) The certificate of livery registration, rental agreements, and required safety equipment are subject to inspection at any time at the livery's place of business by any authorized representative of the division of watercraft or any law enforcement officer in accordance with section 1547.63 of the Revised Code.

(E) Except as provided in this section, all watercraft registered under this section are subject to this chapter and Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code.

(F) The chief may issue an order temporarily restricting or suspending a livery certificate of registration and the privileges associated with it without a hearing if the chief finds that the holder of the certificate has violated this chapter.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2013.

Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 07-05-2002

1547.543 Dealer or manufacturer registration certificate.

(A) Any bona fide dealer in watercraft, or any manufacturer of watercraft, upon annual application to the division of watercraft, may receive for each separate place of business a dealer or manufacturer registration certificate assigning a dealer number for use while operating watercraft on the waters in this state. A dealer or manufacturer registration certificate shall not be used for any commercial purpose such as the rental or chartering of watercraft, nor shall the certificate be loaned to any person for the purpose of circumventing any law of this state.

The fee for such a certificate shall be fifty dollars annually.

The chief of the division of watercraft shall select an authorized agent from among those designated under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code to issue dealer and manufacturer registration certificates. The agent shall provide an authorized facsimile of the signature of the chief on each registration certificate and on each pocket-sized certificate issued under this section.

(B) Registration certificates issued to marine dealers or manufacturers shall be available for inspection at all times at the dealers' or manufacturers' place of business for which the certificates were issued.

(C) The division shall issue to each registered dealer or manufacturer one or more pocket-sized certificates bearing the dealer or manufacturer registration number, which shall be carried by the dealer, the manufacturer, or an employee aboard any watercraft being operated on the waters in this state.

(D) Each dealer in or manufacturer of watercraft shall display on both sides of any watercraft being operated on the waters in this state the dealer or manufacturer registration number and the validation decals assigned by the authorized agent selected by the chief under this section so that the decals and number are clearly visible under normal operating conditions. The authorized agent selected by the chief shall furnish with each dealer or manufacturer registration certificate one or more sets of registration validation decals of a size and shape prescribed by the chief. Additional sets of decals may be purchased for a two-dollar fee.

(E) The chief may issue an order temporarily or permanently restricting or suspending a dealer or manufacturer registration certificate without a hearing if the chief finds that the holder of the certificate has violated this section.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.544 Effect of child support default on certificate.

On receipt of a notice pursuant to section 3123.43 of the Revised Code, the division of watercraft shall comply with sections 3123.41 to 3123.50 of the Revised Code and any applicable rules adopted under section 3123.63 of the Revised Code with respect to a certificate issued pursuant to section 1547.542 or 1547.543 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 03-22-2001

1547.55 Moneys collected paid into waterways safety fund.

All moneys collected by the chief of the division of watercraft under this chapter shall be paid into the waterways safety fund established in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code. All expenses for salaries, operation, and administration of the division of watercraft shall be paid from the fund. The chief may make expenditures from the fund for publishing statutes and rules concerning watercraft, for publications which are solely for the purpose of providing education in watercraft safety, sanitation, or operation, and for other educational devices for that purpose. The chief shall make payments to the division of parks and recreation, the division of wildlife, conservancy districts, and political subdivisions of this state as further provided in section 1547.56 of the Revised Code. No moneys paid into the fund shall be used or paid out for any purposes other than those for which the fund is appropriated. All investment earnings of the fund shall be credited to the fund.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.56 Reimbursing political subdivisions and agencies.

All applications for a registration certificate filed with the chief of the division of watercraft shall bear a notation as to water principally used by the watercraft. The division of parks and recreation, the division of wildlife, conservancy districts, and other political subdivisions having impounded bodies of water upon which boating is permitted and authorized shall file annually with the chief an application for refund. The chief shall annually reimburse the division of parks and recreation, the division of wildlife, conservancy districts, and such other political subdivisions which have made proper application, in the amount of money collected by the chief as fees for the issuance of registration certificates commensurate with the number of watercraft having designated the waters of the division, conservancy district, or political subdivision as the water principally used. The amounts so refunded shall not be less than ninety per cent of the amounts separately collected by the division of parks and recreation, the division of wildlife, conservancy districts, and other political subdivisions, in the calendar year 1959, for watercraft license fees so long as the total revenue received by the division of watercraft in each succeeding license year thereafter is equal to, or in excess of, the total revenue derived by all state departments, conservancy districts, and political subdivisions of this state, requiring licenses, and received by them in the calendar year 1959. The chief shall first deduct from the amount to be refunded the applicable pro rata share of all costs of operation of the division of watercraft determined by the ratio between the amount to be so refunded and the total fees received by the division of watercraft for issuances of registration certificates. On all applications which have designated water other than those specified above as water principally used, the chief shall pay the fees received from the applications to the waterways safety fund established in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.57 Watercraft tags.

(A) Except as otherwise provided in division (C) of this section, when the chief of the division of watercraft issues a registration certificate under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code, the chief also shall issue to the applicant two tags not larger than three inches square, color coded, indicating the expiration date of the certificate. The owner of watercraft currently documented by the United States coast guard and for which a registration certificate is issued shall securely affix one tag to the watercraft's port side and the other tag to the starboard side so that the tags are clearly visible under normal operating conditions. The tags shall be removed from the watercraft when they become invalid. The owner of any other watercraft for which a registration certificate is issued shall securely affix one tag to the watercraft's port side, six inches toward the stern from the identification number, and the other tag to the starboard side, six inches toward the stern from the identification number. The tags shall be securely affixed to the watercraft prior to its operation, but shall be removed from the watercraft when they become invalid. A person may operate without a registration certificate issued under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code, for a period not to exceed forty-five days, any watercraft required to be titled on the waters in this state if the person is in compliance with section 1547.531 of the Revised Code.

(B) The owner of every watercraft requiring numbering by this state shall attach to each side of the bow of the watercraft the permanent identification number in such manner as may be prescribed by applicable federal standards in order that it shall be clearly visible. The number shall be maintained in a legible condition at all times. No number other than the number assigned to a watercraft or granted by reciprocity pursuant to this chapter shall be painted, attached, or otherwise displayed on either side of the bow of the watercraft.

(C) When the chief issues a registration certificate under section 1547.54 of the Revised Code for a canoe, rowboat, or inflatable watercraft that has not been numbered under section 1547.53 of the Revised Code, the chief also shall issue to the applicant a tag not larger than three inches by six inches, with distinguishing color coding and a number for identification purposes. The owner of the canoe, rowboat, or inflatable watercraft for which the registration certificate is issued shall affix the tag securely to a location on the canoe, rowboat, or inflatable watercraft as prescribed by rules adopted by the chief under section 1547.52 of the Revised Code.

(D) No person shall operate or permit to be operated any watercraft on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 07-05-2002

1547.58 [Repealed].

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.59 Rendering assistance after collision.

The operator of a vessel involved in a collision, accident, or other casualty, so far as the operator can do so without serious danger to the operator's own vessel, crew, and passengers, shall render to other persons affected by the collision, accident, or other casualty such assistance as may be practicable and as may be necessary in order to save them from or minimize any danger caused by the collision, accident, or other casualty. The operator also shall give the operator's name, address, and identification of the operator's vessel in writing to any person injured and to the owner of any property damaged in the collision, accident, or other casualty.

Any person who renders assistance at the scene of a collision, accident, or other casualty involving a vessel is not liable in a civil action for damages or injury to persons or property resulting from any act or omission in rendering assistance or in providing or arranging salvage, towage, medical treatment, or other assistance, except that the person is liable for willful or wanton misconduct in rendering assistance. Nothing in this section precludes recovery from any tortfeasor causing a collision, accident, or other casualty of damages caused or aggravated by the rendering of assistance.

In the case of collision, accident, or other casualty involving a vessel, the operator thereof, if the collision, accident, or other casualty results in loss of life, personal injury requiring medical treatment beyond first aid, or damage to property in excess of five hundred dollars, shall file with the chief of the division of watercraft a full description of the collision, accident, or other casualty on a form prescribed by the chief. The report so filed shall be used for statistical purposes only and shall not be admissible for any purpose in any civil, criminal, or administrative action at law.

If the operator of the vessel involved in a collision, accident, or other casualty is incapacitated, the investigating law enforcement officer shall file the required form as prescribed by the chief.

Effective Date: 03-18-1997

1547.60 [Repealed].

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.61 Applicable state laws.

This chapter and other applicable laws of this state govern the operation, equipment, registration, numbering, and all other matters relating thereto whenever any vessel is operated on the waters in this state, whether the waters are under the jurisdiction and control of a state department, conservancy district, or political subdivision, or when any activity regulated by this chapter takes place thereon; but nothing in this chapter prevents the adoption of any rule or ordinance relating to operation and equipment of vessels the provisions of which are identical to the provisions of this chapter or rules adopted under it; provided, that such rules or ordinances shall be operative only so long as and to the extent that they continue to be identical to the provisions of this chapter or rules adopted under it. Conservancy districts and political subdivisions may adopt ordinances or rules limiting the horsepower of inboard or outboard motors, the maximum and minimum size and type of vessels, and the speed at which vessels may be operated, except that, upon impounded bodies of water covering three thousand five hundred acres of land or more, no conservancy district or political subdivision shall prohibit the use of motors of one hundred twenty horsepower or less when used in conjunction with properly proportioned boats in a reasonable area to be designed for the use of those motors and boats and for water skiing; and provided that upon Tappan Lake no conservancy district or political subdivision shall prohibit the use of motors of sixty-five horsepower or less when used in conjunction with properly proportioned boats in a reasonable area to be designated for the use of those motors and boats and for water skiing.

Any state department, conservancy district, or political subdivision may, at any time, but only after public notice published in a newspaper of local circulation, make formal application to the chief of the division of watercraft for special rules with reference to the operation of vessels on any waters within its territorial limits and shall set forth therein the reasons which make such special rules necessary or appropriate.

The division of watercraft may make special rules governing the operation of vessels on any waters within the territorial limits of any political subdivision.

No political subdivision or conservancy district shall charge any license fee or other charge against the owner of any vessel for the right or privilege of operating the vessel upon the waters of any such political subdivision or conservancy district, and no license or number in addition to those provided for under this chapter shall be required by any state department, conservancy district, or political subdivision.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.62 [Repealed].

Effective Date: 07-05-2002

1547.63 Enforcement.

Every sheriff, deputy sheriff, marshal, deputy marshal, member of the organized police department of any municipal corporation, police constable of any township, wildlife officer, park officer, preserve officer, conservancy district police officer, and other law enforcement officer, within the area of his authority, may enforce this chapter and rules adopted by the chief of the division of watercraft and, in the exercise thereof, may stop and board any vessel subject to this chapter and rules adopted under it.

Effective Date: 10-20-1994

1547.64 [Repealed].

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.65 Hull identification number.

(A) A watercraft constructed on or after November 1, 1972, shall have a hull identification number permanently displayed and affixed to it in accordance with federal law.

(B) A watercraft constructed before November 1, 1972, shall have a hull identification number assigned to it by the chief of the division of watercraft at the time of registration, at the time of application for title, after transfer of ownership, or at the time of a change to this state as the principal location of operation. The number shall be permanently displayed and affixed as prescribed by rules adopted under section 1547.52 of the Revised Code.

(C) A person who builds a watercraft or imports a watercraft from another country for personal use and not for the purpose of sale shall request a hull identification number from the chief and permanently display and affix the number as prescribed by rules adopted under section 1547.52 of the Revised Code.

(D) No person shall operate or permit to be operated any watercraft on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

Effective Date: 07-05-2002

1547.66 Alterating identifying marks - false information on application for registration.

No person shall deface or alter any serial number, model designation, or other identifying mark on any watercraft or motor as placed thereon by the manufacturer thereof, or remove, deface, or alter the registration number of any watercraft as the registration number appears on the bow thereof except by specific order of the chief of the division of watercraft.

No person shall give purposely false information concerning any watercraft or motor when applying for registration of the watercraft. Any certificate issued which is found to be based on such false information is void.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.67 Establishing and maintaining marine patrols to enforce chapter.

The division of watercraft, with the approval of the director of natural resources, may expend, for the purpose of assisting political subdivisions, conservancy districts, and state departments to establish or maintain and operate a marine patrol for the purpose of enforcing this chapter and Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code and rules adopted under them and to provide emergency response to boating accidents on the water, such funds as are appropriated by the general assembly for that purpose and, in addition, such moneys from the waterways safety fund established in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code as determined to be necessary by the division not to exceed ten per cent of all moneys accruing to the fund. In no case shall the grant to a political subdivision, conservancy district, or state department, not including the department of natural resources, total more than thirty-five thousand dollars in a calendar year. Moneys so allocated may be used for the purchase, maintenance, and operation of vessels and marine equipment, educational materials, and personnel salaries that are necessary for enforcement of this chapter and Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code and rules adopted under them and to provide emergency response to boating accidents on the water.

The division shall disburse the moneys as provided in this section in accordance with its determination of need in the enforcement of this chapter and Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code and rules adopted under them and shall disburse those moneys only on a cost share basis to supplement funds allocated by a political subdivision, conservancy district, or state department for that purpose. A grantee shall provide at least twenty-five per cent of the total program cost.

Effective Date: 09-05-2001

1547.68 Boating safety education programs.

To assist political subdivisions, conservancy districts, state departments, or nonprofit organizations in establishing or participating in boating safety education programs, the division of watercraft, with the approval of the director of natural resources, may expend moneys appropriated by the general assembly for those purposes and, additionally, moneys from the waterways safety fund established in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code determined to be necessary by the division, but not to exceed ten per cent of all moneys accruing to the fund. In no case shall a grant to any one political subdivision, conservancy district, state department, or nonprofit organization total more than thirty thousand dollars in a calendar year. Moneys so allocated may be used for personnel salaries and training, materials, supplies, equipment, and related expenses needed to conduct boating education programs.

The division shall disburse the moneys as provided in this section in accordance with its determination of need in the enforcement of this chapter and rules adopted under it or for the establishment of or participation in a boating safety education program. The division shall disburse moneys only on a cost share basis. A grantee shall provide at least twenty-five per cent of the total program cost and may do so with cash, in-kind services or contributions, or a combination. The cost share shall be allocated by a political subdivision, conservancy district, state department, or nonprofit organization for those purposes.

Effective Date: 09-29-1999

1547.69 Firearm prohibitions.

(A) As used in this section:

(1) "Firearm," "concealed handgun license," "handgun," and "valid concealed handgun license" have the same meanings as in section 2923.11 of the Revised Code.

(2) "Unloaded" has the same meanings as in divisions (K)(5) and (6) of section 2923.16 of the Revised Code, except that all references in the definition in division (K)(5) of that section to "vehicle" shall be construed for purposes of this section to be references to "vessel."

(B) No person shall knowingly discharge a firearm while in or on a vessel.

(C) No person shall knowingly transport or have a loaded firearm in a vessel in a manner that the firearm is accessible to the operator or any passenger.

(D) No person shall knowingly transport or have a firearm in a vessel unless it is unloaded and is carried in one of the following ways:

(1) In a closed package, box, or case;

(2) In plain sight with the action opened or the weapon stripped, or, if the firearm is of a type on which the action will not stay open or that cannot easily be stripped, in plain sight.

(E)

(1) The affirmative defenses authorized in divisions (D)(1) and (2) of section 2923.12 of the Revised Code are affirmative defenses to a charge under division (C) or (D) of this section that involves a firearm other than a handgun. It is an affirmative defense to a charge under division (C) or (D) of this section of transporting or having a firearm of any type, including a handgun, in a vessel that the actor transported or had the firearm in the vessel for any lawful purpose and while the vessel was on the actor's own property, provided that this affirmative defense is not available unless the actor, prior to arriving at the vessel on the actor's own property, did not transport or possess the firearm in the vessel or in a motor vehicle in a manner prohibited by this section or division (B) or (C) of section 2923.16 of the Revised Code while the vessel was being operated on a waterway that was not on the actor's own property or while the motor vehicle was being operated on a street, highway, or other public or private property used by the public for vehicular traffic.

(2) No person who is charged with a violation of division (C) or (D) of this section shall be required to obtain a license or temporary emergency license to carry a concealed handgun under section 2923.125 or 2923.1213 of the Revised Code as a condition for the dismissal of the charge.

(F) Divisions (B), (C), and (D) of this section do not apply to the possession or discharge of a United States coast guard approved signaling device required to be carried aboard a vessel under section 1547.251 of the Revised Code when the signaling device is possessed or used for the purpose of giving a visual distress signal. No person shall knowingly transport or possess any signaling device of that nature in or on a vessel in a loaded condition at any time other than immediately prior to the discharge of the signaling device for the purpose of giving a visual distress signal.

(G) No person shall operate or permit to be operated any vessel on the waters in this state in violation of this section.

(H)

(1) This section does not apply to any of the following:

(a) An officer, agent, or employee of this or any other state or of the United States, or to a law enforcement officer, when authorized to carry or have loaded or accessible firearms in a vessel and acting within the scope of the officer's, agent's, or employee's duties;

(b) Any person who is employed in this state, who is authorized to carry or have loaded or accessible firearms in a vessel, and who is subject to and in compliance with the requirements of section 109.801 of the Revised Code, unless the appointing authority of the person has expressly specified that the exemption provided in division (H)(1)(b) of this section does not apply to the person;

(c) Any person legally engaged in hunting.

(2) Divisions (C) and (D) of this section do not apply to a person who transports or possesses a handgun in a vessel and who, at the time of that transportation or possession, is carrying a valid concealed handgun license, unless the person knowingly is in a place on the vessel described in division (B) of section 2923.126 of the Revised Code.

(I) If a law enforcement officer stops a vessel for a violation of this section or any other law enforcement purpose, if any person on the vessel surrenders a firearm to the officer, either voluntarily or pursuant to a request or demand of the officer, and if the officer does not charge the person with a violation of this section or arrest the person for any offense, the person is not otherwise prohibited by law from possessing the firearm, and the firearm is not contraband, the officer shall return the firearm to the person at the termination of the stop.

(J) Division (L) of section 2923.16 of the Revised Code applies with respect to division (A)(2) of this section, except that all references in division (L) of section 2923.16 of the Revised Code to "vehicle," to "this chapter," or to "division (K)(5)(a) or (b) of this section" shall be construed for purposes of this section to be, respectively, references to "vessel," to "section 1547.69 of the Revised Code," and to divisions (K)(5)(a) and (b) of section 2923.16 of the Revised Code as incorporated under the definition of firearm adopted under division (A)(2) of this section.

Amended by 129th General AssemblyFile No.190, HB 495, §1, eff. 3/27/2013.

Effective Date: 04-08-2004; 03-14-2007

1547.71 Refuge and small boat harbor agency.

The division of watercraft shall act as the refuge and small boat harbor agency of the state for the purpose of participating with, and co-operating with the department of the army, corps of engineers, pursuant to the enabling provisions in the act known as the "Fletcher Act of 1932" and its amendments and successors, including Public Law 14 of the 79th congress authorized March 2, 1945, pursuant to House Document No.446 of the 78th congress.

The division of watercraft shall participate and co-operate with the corps of engineers in acquiring, constructing, and maintaining refuge and light draft vessel harbor projects, channels, and facilities for vessels in the navigable waters lying within the boundaries of the state.

Effective Date: 11-02-1961

1547.72 Construction and operation of refuge harbors.

(A) The division of watercraft, whenever it considers it in the best interests of the state, and as an aid to lake commerce and navigation or recreational boating, may construct, maintain, repair, and operate refuge harbors and other projects for the harboring, mooring, docking, launching, and storing of light draft vessels, and marine recreational facilities. Subject to section 1547.77 of the Revised Code, those harbors, projects, and facilities may be constructed on waters in this state. If a refuge harbor lies between the shoreline and a harbor line established by the United States government so as to interfere with the wharfing out by a littoral owner to navigable waters, the littoral owner shall consent thereto in writing before the location and construction thereof.

The division may lease any space in those refuge harbors or other projects for the harboring, mooring, docking, launching, and storing of light draft vessels. The rental therefor shall be determined by the division.

(B) The division, with the approval of the director of natural resources, may expend for the acquisition of any rights in land; for the construction, maintenance, repair, and operation of refuge harbors and other projects for the harboring, mooring, docking, launching, and storing of light draft vessels, and marine recreational facilities on waters in this state; for planning, studies, surveys, and engineering therefor; or for the improvement of harbors, channels, and waterways to foster vessel safety, funds appropriated by the general assembly for those purposes and, in addition, moneys accruing to the waterways safety fund established in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code.

(C) The division, with the approval of the director, may distribute moneys for the purpose of administering federal assistance to public and private entities in accordance with guidelines established under each federal grant program. Public and private entities that receive moneys under this division may charge fees at the facilities in accordance with the applicable federal guidelines.

Effective Date: 03-30-2000

1547.721 [Repealed].

Repealed by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §105.01, eff. 9/29/2013.

Effective Date: 09-29-2005

1547.722 [Repealed].

Repealed by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §105.01, eff. 9/29/2013.

Effective Date: 09-29-2005

1547.723 [Repealed].

Repealed by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §105.01, eff. 9/29/2013.

Effective Date: 09-29-2005

1547.724 [Repealed].

Repealed by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §105.01, eff. 9/29/2013.

Effective Date: 09-29-2005

1547.725 [Repealed].

Repealed by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §105.01, eff. 9/29/2013.

Effective Date: 09-29-2005

1547.726 [Repealed].

Repealed by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §105.01, eff. 9/29/2013.

Effective Date: 09-29-2005

1547.73 Waterways safety council.

There is hereby created in the division of watercraft a waterways safety council composed of five members appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate. Not more than three of such appointees shall belong to the same political party. Terms of office shall be for five years, commencing on the first day of February and ending on the thirty-first day of January. Each member shall hold office from the date of appointment until the end of the term for which the member was appointed. The chief of the division of watercraft shall act as secretary of the council. In the event of the death, removal, resignation, or incapacity of a member of the council, the governor, with the advice and consent of the senate, shall appoint a successor to fill the unexpired term who shall hold office for the remainder of the term for which the member's predecessor was appointed. Any member shall continue in office subsequent to the expiration date of the member's term until the member's successor takes office, or until a period of sixty days has elapsed, whichever occurs first. The governor may remove any appointed member of the council for misfeasance, nonfeasance, or malfeasance in office.

The council may:

(A) Advise with and recommend to the chief as to plans and programs for the construction, maintenance, repair, and operation of refuge harbors and other projects for the harboring, mooring, docking, and storing of light draft vessels as provided in sections 1547.71 , 1547.72 , and 1547.78 of the Revised Code;

(B) Advise with and recommend to the chief as to the methods of coordinating the shore erosion projects of the department of natural resources with the refuge of light draft vessel harbor projects;

(C) Advise with and recommend to the chief as to plans and programs for the acquisition, protection, construction, maintenance, and administration of wild river areas, scenic river areas, and recreational river areas;

(D) Consider and make recommendations upon any matter which is brought to its attention by any person or that the chief may submit to it;

(E) Submit to the governor biennially recommendations for amendments to the laws of the state relative to refuge and light draft vessel harbor projects.

Before entering upon the discharge of official duties, each member of the council shall take and subscribe to an oath of office, which oath, in writing, shall be filed in the office of the secretary of state.

The members of the council shall serve without compensation, but shall be entitled to receive their actual and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their official duties from the waterways safety fund as provided in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code.

The council shall, by a majority vote of all its members, adopt and amend bylaws.

To be eligible for appointment as a member of the council, a person shall be a citizen of the United States and an elector of the state and possess a knowledge of and have an interest in small boat operations.

The council shall hold at least four regular quarterly meetings each year. Special meetings shall be held at such times as the bylaws of the council provide, or at the behest of a majority of its members. Notices of all meetings shall be given in such manner as the bylaws provide. The council shall choose annually from among its members a chairperson to preside over its meetings. A majority of the members of the council shall constitute a quorum. No advice shall be given or recommendation made without a majority of the members of the council concurring therein.

Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 08-21-1973

1547.74 Facilities in harbors and connecting waterways.

Facilities in harbors and connecting waterways established under sections 1547.71 , 1547.72 , and 1547.78 of the Revised Code shall be open to all on equal and reasonable terms.

Effective Date: 11-02-1961

1547.75 Waterways safety fund.

There is hereby created in the state treasury the waterways safety fund for the purposes provided in this chapter and Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code. All moneys collected or received to implement the chapters shall be deposited in the state treasury to the credit of the fund.

Effective Date: 03-18-1997

1547.76 State participation in federal program.

In addition to the other matters contained therein, sections 1547.71 to 1547.77 , inclusive, and section 5735.051 of the Revised Code, constitute prima-facie evidence by the state of the provisions for state participation in the federal program for construction of certain harbors of refuge in navigable waters lying within the boundaries of the state as provided in Public Law 14 of the 79th congress authorized March 2, 1945, 59 Stat. 10, pursuant to House Document No.446 of the 78th congress.

Effective Date: 10-10-1963

1547.77 Action not in conflict.

Any action taken by the chief of the division of watercraft under sections 1547.71 to 1547.78 of the Revised Code, shall not be deemed in conflict with certain powers and duties conferred upon and delegated to federal agencies, and to municipal corporations under section 7 of Article XVIII, Ohio Constitution, or as provided by sections 721.04 to 721.11 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 03-15-1989

1547.78 Gifts, devises and bequests.

The division of watercraft, in carrying out sections 1547.71 to 1547.78, inclusive, of the Revised Code, may accept, receive, and expend gifts, devises, or bequests of money, lands, or other properties under the terms set forth in section 9.20 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 11-02-1961

1547.79 All fines, forfeitures and penalties paid to director for fund.

All fines, forfeitures, and penalties arising from prosecutions, convictions, confiscations, or other actions commenced by department of natural resources law enforcement officers, including, but not limited to, wildlife officers, park officers, and state watercraft officers under this chapter or Chapter 1548. of the Revised Code, or commenced by state watercraft officers under any law prohibiting the dumping of refuse, trash, or litter into the waters in this state, shall be paid to the director of natural resources and by him paid into the waterways safety fund established in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code for the purposes provided in sections 1547.55 , 1547.67 , 1547.71 , and 1547.72 of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 10-20-1994

1547.80 Rules for security of ports and related facilities.

(A) Notwithstanding any provision of the Revised Code to the contrary, the department of natural resources, division of watercraft, in consultation with the department of public safety, shall adopt rules regarding the security of ports on waterways in this state and the facilities associated with those ports. The rules shall include but not be limited to provisions that do the following:

(1) Designate the ports, located in whole or in part within this state, to which the requirements of this section apply, considering the size and activity of the port, its proximity to a metropolitan location, its proximity to a sensitive site as defined in section 4563.30 of the Revised Code, and any other criteria related to security that the department considers reasonable;

(2) Require the designated ports to register biennially with the department of natural resources;

(3) Require the designated ports to do all of the following:

(a) Prepare a written security plan that is consistent with the most recent security guidelines established pursuant to the national maritime transportation security plan by the secretary in the department in which the United States coast guard is located;

(b) Develop a written list of emergency contacts and telephone numbers;

(c) Restrict access to vessels by unauthorized persons;

(d) Require those piloting or renting vessels to provide identification;

(e) Create an emergency locater map that identifies areas of the port facilities;

(f) Familiarize local law enforcement agencies with the facilities and consult with them in the development of the port's security procedures.

(4) Require all owners of vessels or pilots to secure their vessels;

(5) Require all persons who rent a vessel to present government-issued identification, in addition to any required license, to the person who rents them the vessel;

(6) Address the security of port facilities located in whole or in part in this state in any other manner the department determines to be necessary.

(B) The security plan and the emergency locator map this section describes shall display prominently the following statement: "This document may contain information that, if disclosed, could endanger the life or safety of the public; therefore, this document is to be maintained and used in a manner that preserves the confidentiality of the information it contains in a manner consistent with law."

(C) Each port facility designated pursuant to division (A) of this section shall provide a copy of the registration this section requires and the port's security plan and emergency locator map to the department of public safety, to the department of natural resources, to the sheriff of the county in which the port is located in whole or in part, and if the facility is located in whole or in part in a municipal corporation, to the chief of police of each municipal corporation in which the port is located. Copies of registration, emergency locator maps, and security plans provided under this division are not public records under section 149.43 of the Revised Code and are not subject to mandatory disclosure under that section.

(D) This section shall not be construed to replace or supersede any standards for facilities the United States department of homeland security and the transportation security administration require, safety standards of the United States department of transportation, or any standard or law related to maritime security enforced by the secretary of the department in which the United States coast guard is located.

Effective Date: 04-14-2006

1547.81 Creating wild, scenic, or recreational river areas.

The director of natural resources or the director's representative may create, supervise, operate, protect, and maintain wild, scenic, and recreational river areas . In creating wild, scenic, and recreational river areas, the director shall classify each such area as either a wild river area, a scenic river area, or a recreational river area. The director or the director's representative may prepare and maintain a plan for the establishment, development, use, and administration of those areas as a part of the comprehensive state plans for water management and outdoor recreation. The director or the director's representative may cooperate with federal agencies administering any federal program concerning wild, scenic, or recreational river areas.

The director may propose for establishment as a wild, scenic, or recreational river area a part or parts of any watercourse in this state, with adjacent lands, that in the director's judgment possesses water conservation, scenic, fish, wildlife, historic, or outdoor recreation values that should be preserved. The area shall include lands adjacent to the watercourse in sufficient width to preserve, protect, and develop the natural character of the watercourse, but shall not include any lands more than one thousand feet from the normal waterlines of the watercourse unless an additional width is necessary to preserve water conservation, scenic, fish, wildlife, historic, or outdoor recreation values.

The director shall publish the intention to declare an area a wild, scenic, or recreational river area at least once in a newspaper of general circulation in each county, any part of which is within the area, and shall send written notice of the intention to the legislative authority of each county, township, and municipal corporation and to each conservancy district established under Chapter 6101. of the Revised Code, any part of which is within the area, and to the director of transportation, the director of development, the director of administrative services, and the director of environmental protection. The notices shall include a copy of a map and description of the area.

After thirty days from the last date of publication or dispatch of written notice as required in this section, the director shall enter a declaration in the director's journal that the area is a wild river area, scenic river area, or recreational river area. When so entered, the area is a wild, scenic, or recreational river area, as applicable. The director, after thirty days' notice as prescribed in this section and upon the approval of the recreation and resources commission created in section 1501.04 of the Revised Code, may terminate the status of an area as a wild river area, scenic river area, or recreational river area by an entry in the director's journal.

Declaration by the director that an area is a wild, scenic, or recreational river area does not authorize the director or any governmental agency or political subdivision to restrict the use of land by the owner thereof or any person acting under the landowner's authority or to enter upon the land and does not expand or abridge the regulatory authority of any governmental agency or political subdivision over the area.

The director may enter into a lease or other agreement with a political subdivision to administer all or part of a wild, scenic, or recreational river area and may acquire real property or any estate, right, or interest therein in order to provide for the protection and public recreational use of a wild, scenic, or recreational river area.

The chief of the division of watercraft or the chief's representative may participate in watershed-wide planning with federal, state, and local agencies in order to protect the values of wild, scenic, and recreational river areas.

Renumbered from § 1517.14 and amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 03-18-1999

1547.82 Approving structures and channel modifications.

No state department, state agency, or political subdivision shall build or enlarge any highway, road, or structure or modify or cause the modification of the channel of any watercourse within a wild, scenic, or recreational river area outside the limits of a municipal corporation without first having obtained approval of the plans for the highway, road, or structure or channel modification from the director of natural resources or the director's representative. The court of common pleas having jurisdiction, upon petition by the director, shall enjoin work on any highway, road, or structure or channel modification for which such approval has not been obtained.

Renumbered from § 1517.16 and amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 10-20-1994

1547.83 Administering program and areas.

The chief of the division of watercraft shall administer the state programs for wild river areas, scenic river areas, and recreational river areas. The chief may accept and administer state and federal financial assistance for the maintenance, protection, and administration of wild, scenic, and recreational river areas and for construction of facilities within those areas. The chief, with the approval of the director of natural resources, may expend for the purpose of administering the state programs for wild, scenic, and recreational river areas money that is appropriated by the general assembly for that purpose, money that is in the scenic rivers protection fund created in section 4501.24 of the Revised Code, and money that is in the waterways safety fund created in section 1547.75 of the Revised Code, including money generated by the waterways conservation assessment fee levied by sections 1547.54 and 1547.542 of the Revised Code, as determined to be necessary by the division of watercraft not to exceed six hundred fifty thousand dollars per fiscal year. The chief may condition any expenditures, maintenance activities, or construction of facilities on the adoption and enforcement of adequate floodplain zoning or land use rules.

Any instrument by which real property is acquired pursuant to this section shall identify the agency of the state that has the use and benefit of the real property as specified in section 5301.012 of the Revised Code.

The chief may cooperate with federal agencies administering any federal program concerning wild, scenic, or recreational river areas.

Renumbered from § 1517.17 and amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 10-26-1999

1547.84 Advisory council appointed for each area.

The director of natural resources shall appoint an advisory council for each wild, scenic, or recreational river area, composed of not more than ten persons who are representative of local government and local organizations and interests in the vicinity of the wild, scenic, or recreational river area, who shall serve without compensation. The chief of the division of watercraft or the chief's representative shall serve as an ex officio member of each council.

The initial members appointed to each council shall serve for terms of not more than three years, with the terms of not more than four members of any council ending in the same year. Thereafter, terms of office shall be for three years commencing on the first day of February and ending on the last day of January.

Each council shall advise the chief on the acquisition of land and easements and on the lands and waters that should be included in a wild, scenic, or recreational river area or a proposed wild, scenic, or recreational river area, facilities therein, and other aspects of establishment and administration of the area that may affect the local interest.

Renumbered from § 1517.18 and amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 10-20-1994

1547.85 Participation in federal protection program.

The director of natural resources may participate in the federal program for the protection of certain selected rivers that are located within the boundaries of the state as provided in the "Wild and Scenic Rivers Act," 82 Stat. 906 (1968), 16 U.S.C. 1271 et seq., as amended. The director may authorize the chief of the division of watercraft to participate inany other federal program established for the purpose of protecting, conserving, or developing recreational access to waters in this state that possess outstanding scenic, recreational, geologic, fish and wildlife, historic, cultural, or other similar values.

Added by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

1547.86 Reconciliation of powers.

Any action taken by the chief of the division of watercraft under sections 1547.81 to 1547.87 of the Revised Code shall not be deemed in conflict with certain powers and duties conferred on and delegated to federal agencies and to municipal corporations under Section 7 of Article XVIII, Ohio Constitution, or as provided by sections 721.04 to 721.11 of the Revised Code.

Added by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

1547.87 Division of watercraft powers.

The division of watercraft, in carrying out sections 1547.81 to 1547.87 of the Revised Code, may accept, receive, and expend gifts, devises, or bequests of money, lands, or other properties under the terms established in section 9.20 of the Revised Code.

Added by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

1547.91 Wrecking.

No person, with purpose to unlawfully damage, ground, or sink a vessel afloat, shall do any of the following:

(A) Employ any false signal, buoy, or other aid to navigation;

(B) Tamper with any signal, buoy, or other aid to navigation;

(C) Do any act which creates an imminent and substantial risk that any vessel afloat will be damaged, grounded, sunk, or scuttled.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.92 Prohibited acts.

No person shall knowingly:

(A) Damage, remove, or tamper with any signal, buoy, or other aid to navigation;

(B) Sever the mooring lines of, set adrift, or tamper with any vessel that is moored or tied up on the waters in this state.

Effective Date: 06-13-1990

1547.93 [Repealed].

Effective Date: 09-03-1976

1547.99 Penalty.

(A) Whoever violates section 1547.91 of the Revised Code is guilty of a felony of the fourth degree.

(B) Whoever violates division (F) of section 1547.08, section 1547.10, division (I) of section 1547.111, section 1547.13, or section 1547.66 of the Revised Code is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree.

(C) Whoever violates a provision of this chapter or a rule adopted thereunder, for which no penalty is otherwise provided, is guilty of a minor misdemeanor.

(D) Whoever violates section 1547.07, 1547.132, or 1547.12 of the Revised Code without causing injury to persons or damage to property is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree.

(E) Whoever violates section 1547.07, 1547.132, or 1547.12 of the Revised Code causing injury to persons or damage to property is guilty of a misdemeanor of the third degree.

(F) Whoever violates division (N) of section 1547.54, division (G) of section 1547.30, or section 1547.131, 1547.25, 1547.33, 1547.38, 1547.39, 1547.40, 1547.65, 1547.69, or 1547.92 of the Revised Code or a rule adopted under division (A)(2) of section 1547.52 of the Revised Code is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree.

(G) Whoever violates section 1547.11 of the Revised Code is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree and shall be punished as provided in division (G)(1), (2), or (3) of this section.

(1) Except as otherwise provided in division (G)(2) or (3) of this section, the court shall sentence the offender to a jail term of three consecutive days and may sentence the offender pursuant to section 2929.24 of the Revised Code to a longer jail term. In addition, the court shall impose upon the offender a fine of not less than one hundred fifty nor more than one thousand dollars.

The court may suspend the execution of the mandatory jail term of three consecutive days that it is required to impose by division (G)(1) of this section if the court, in lieu of the suspended jail term, places the offender under a community control sanction pursuant to section 2929.25 of the Revised Code and requires the offender to attend, for three consecutive days, a drivers' intervention program that is certified pursuant to section 5119.38 of the Revised Code. The court also may suspend the execution of any part of the mandatory jail term of three consecutive days that it is required to impose by division (G)(1) of this section if the court places the offender under a community control sanction pursuant to section 2929.25 of the Revised Code for part of the three consecutive days; requires the offender to attend, for that part of the three consecutive days, a drivers' intervention program that is certified pursuant to section 5119.38 of the Revised Code; and sentences the offender to a jail term equal to the remainder of the three consecutive days that the offender does not spend attending the drivers' intervention program. The court may require the offender, as a condition of community control, to attend and satisfactorily complete any treatment or education programs, in addition to the required attendance at a drivers' intervention program, that the operators of the drivers' intervention program determine that the offender should attend and to report periodically to the court on the offender's progress in the programs. The court also may impose any other conditions of community control on the offender that it considers necessary.

(2) If, within six years of the offense, the offender has been convicted of or pleaded guilty to one violation of section 1547.11 of the Revised Code or one other equivalent offense, the court shall sentence the offender to a jail term of ten consecutive days and may sentence the offender pursuant to section 2929.24 of the Revised Code to a longer jail term. In addition, the court shall impose upon the offender a fine of not less than one hundred fifty nor more than one thousand dollars.

In addition to any other sentence that it imposes upon the offender, the court may require the offender to attend a drivers' intervention program that is certified pursuant to section 5119.38 of the Revised Code.

(3) If, within six years of the offense, the offender has been convicted of or pleaded guilty to more than one violation or offense identified in division (G)(2) of this section, the court shall sentence the offender to a jail term of thirty consecutive days and may sentence the offender to a longer jail term of not more than one year. In addition, the court shall impose upon the offender a fine of not less than one hundred fifty nor more than one thousand dollars.

In addition to any other sentence that it imposes upon the offender, the court may require the offender to attend a drivers' intervention program that is certified pursuant to section 5119.38 of the Revised Code.

(4) Upon a showing that serving a jail term would seriously affect the ability of an offender sentenced pursuant to division (G)(1), (2), or (3) of this section to continue the offender's employment, the court may authorize that the offender be granted work release after the offender has served the mandatory jail term of three, ten, or thirty consecutive days that the court is required by division (G)(1), (2), or (3) of this section to impose. No court shall authorize work release during the mandatory jail term of three, ten, or thirty consecutive days that the court is required by division (G)(1), (2), or (3) of this section to impose. The duration of the work release shall not exceed the time necessary each day for the offender to commute to and from the place of employment and the place in which the jail term is served and the time actually spent under employment.

(5) Notwithstanding any section of the Revised Code that authorizes the suspension of the imposition or execution of a sentence or the placement of an offender in any treatment program in lieu of being imprisoned or serving a jail term, no court shall suspend the mandatory jail term of ten or thirty consecutive days required to be imposed by division (G)(2) or (3) of this section or place an offender who is sentenced pursuant to division (G)(2) or (3) of this section in any treatment program in lieu of being imprisoned or serving a jail term until after the offender has served the mandatory jail term of ten or thirty consecutive days required to be imposed pursuant to division (G)(2) or (3) of this section. Notwithstanding any section of the Revised Code that authorizes the suspension of the imposition or execution of a sentence or the placement of an offender in any treatment program in lieu of being imprisoned or serving a jail term, no court, except as specifically authorized by division (G)(1) of this section, shall suspend the mandatory jail term of three consecutive days required to be imposed by division (G)(1) of this section or place an offender who is sentenced pursuant to division (G)(1) of this section in any treatment program in lieu of imprisonment until after the offender has served the mandatory jail term of three consecutive days required to be imposed pursuant to division (G)(1) of this section.

(6) As used in division (G) of this section:

(a) "Equivalent offense" has the same meaning as in section 4511.181 of the Revised Code.

(b) "Jail term" and "mandatory jail term" have the same meanings as in section 2929.01 of the Revised Code.

(H) Whoever violates section 1547.304 of the Revised Code is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree and also shall be assessed any costs incurred by the state or a county, township, municipal corporation, or other political subdivision in disposing of an abandoned junk vessel or outboard motor, less any money accruing to the state, county, township, municipal corporation, or other political subdivision from that disposal.

(I) Whoever violates division (B) or (C) of section 1547.49 of the Revised Code is guilty of a minor misdemeanor.

(J) Whoever violates section 1547.31 of the Revised Code is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree on a first offense. On each subsequent offense, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor of the third degree.

(K) Whoever violates section 1547.05 or 1547.051 of the Revised Code is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree if the violation is not related to a collision, injury to a person, or damage to property and a misdemeanor of the third degree if the violation is related to a collision, injury to a person, or damage to property.

(L) The sentencing court, in addition to the penalty provided under this section for a violation of this chapter or a rule adopted under it that involves a powercraft powered by more than ten horsepower and that, in the opinion of the court, involves a threat to the safety of persons or property, shall order the offender to complete successfully a boating course approved by the national association of state boating law administrators before the offender is allowed to operate a powercraft powered by more than ten horsepower on the waters in this state. Violation of a court order entered under this division is punishable as contempt under Chapter 2705. of the Revised Code.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2013.

Amended by 128th General AssemblyFile No.9, HB 1, §101.01, eff. 7/17/2009.

Effective Date: 01-01-2004; 08-17-2006; 04-06-2007; 2008 SB271 06-13-2008; 2008 SB17 09-30-2008