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New Arkansas Boating Law Raises Minimum Operator Age to 16 Years Old

By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network

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Tragedies and deaths often times result in changes to laws to provide safety measures for children. In Arkansas, a law recently went into effect that raises the minimum age
An accident on Lake Hamilton two years ago led to a new Arkansas law that takes effect this week, setting the minimum age of 16 for a solo operator of a personal watercraft. The law is known as Rachel’s bill which was enacted in memory of Rachel Rutherford. Rachel died in March 2007 at the age of 15 from injuries suffered in a jet ski accident. Children in the age range from 12 to 16 can operate a watercraft but only if they are riding with an operator who is 18 years of age or older. The law also requires all personal watercraft drivers to enroll in and complete a safe boating education course.

Hopefully, this law will reduce the number of serious personal injuries and deaths on Arkansas waterways. You can read more about this law at New Arkansas Law Raises Age Limit of Watercraft Operators.