Watercraft (boats), fishing, pontoons

While boat insurance is not mandatory, it can cover damage, liability, and other unforeseen events.

Types of Insurance

For a privately owned recreational boat, your insurance options include:

  1. Hull and Machinery – provides damage coverage up to the total loss of your boat and attached equipment.
  2. Protection and Indemnity – provides liability coverage that protects you against property damage and bodily injury. It also provides help with investigating a loss and preparing your defence. If you are found to be at fault, it provides payment up to the limit listed in your policy.
  3. Medical Payments – provides coverage for incidental medical expenses due to an incident on your boat.

If you also own a recreational property, you may have outbuildings, such as a boathouse, garage or shed. You may need additional coverage to ensure that these buildings are fully protected – be aware of coverages and exclusions.

6 Steps to Boat Safety

Step 1

Keep your Pleasure Craft Operator (PCO) card with you. Federal regulations specify that anyone who operates a boat with a motor in Canada must have a PCO card.

Step 2

Before boating, check the weather forecast. Ensure there are no hazards such as high winds or approaching thunderstorms.

Step 3

Plan ahead. Know where you are going. Getting lost on the water is no fun. Bring a map and tell someone where you are going and when you expect to return.

Step 4

Fill up the gas tank. Ensure that your boat has enough fuel for your outing. Keep tools, spare parts, a first-aid kit, and other safety equipment – such as paddles, whistles, and flares – on board.

Step 5

Ensure that every person has a lifejacket. The law requires boats to be equipped with a Canadian-approved lifejacket or PFDs of an appropriate size for each person on board. Make sure your PFD is comfortable and allows for easy movement. Check that seams are intact and all snaps, belts and zippers work properly. Remember, bright colours are easier to spot in an emergency.

Step 6

Be responsible. Boat sober. Boats and booze don’t mix. Sun, wind, noise, glare, vibrations, and motion can heighten the effect of alcohol on your balance, vision, judgment, and coordination. Don’t allow a person who has consumed alcohol to operate a boat.


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