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Licensing

Commercial marine licences
You need to have a commercial marine licence to operate a commercial vessel. Commercial vessels are generally those used for any business, trade, commerce, government or research activity. They can include fishing ships, tourist or charter boats, work boats, ferries, water taxis and dive boats.

Recreational marine licences
You must have a marine licence to operate a boat that has an engine power greater than 4.5kW. In Queensland a boat (also known as a Queensland regulated ship) must only be used for recreational activities, or for school, surf lifesaving or community activities—not for business, trade or commerce. To operate a personal watercraft, you must have a recreational marine licence and a personal watercraft licence.

BoatSafe
The BoatSafe program management documents have been reviewed (1 September 2020) to provide a clearer framework for the BoatSafe trainers and outline MSQ's expectations for how our new boaties are being assessed as competent skippers.

To support this focus, we want to ensure every student understands what is expected of them when attending a BoatSafe course. The following key points is what a typical boat course includes:

  • Online or face to face theory training 
  • 50 question multiple choice theory assessment (45mins to complete) 100% pass requirement
  • Practical training driving the boat (until you are competent in all tasks)
  • Practical assessment – you must successfully complete all tasks to be deemed competent

We encourage you to practice driving a boat with another licenced skipper before arriving at a BoatSafe course - you may not be competent in driving the boat in just one day.

The BoatSafe trainers in most cases will offer training sessions if you don't have friends or family with boats that you can practice on. These training sessions should be used in the same way that new car driver would engage with a car driving instructor.

For a typical PWC course it will include:

  • Online or face to face theory training
  • Multiple choice theory assessment (45mins to complete) 100% pass mark
  • Practical training driving the PWC (until you are competent in all tasks)
  • Practical assessment – you must successfully complete all tasks to be deemed competent

As we do with the boat training, we encourage you to practice riding a PWC with another licenced skipper or with a BoatSafe Trainer – you may not be competent in riding a PWC in just a few hours.

Some of the activities you should practice for both the PWC and Boat are:

  • Man overboard drill
  • Safely approach a floating object
  • Port and starboard turn on and off the plane
  • Figure 8 manoeuvre on and off the plane
  • Berthing and unberthing  
  • General navigation and control of the ship/PWC
  • Operate at 6 knots or less

Practical Assessment – Recreational Marine Driver Licence

The following video demonstrates some of the practical activities you will be required to undertake during your BoatSafe course. 

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If you have any questions touch base with your local BoatSafe trainer to discuss.

Last updated
02 October 2020