2019 Tennessee Code
Title 69 - Waters, Waterways, Drains and Levees
Chapter 9 - Boating Regulation
Part 5 - Personal Watercraft
§ 69-9-504. Safe operating requirements -- Prohibited maneuvers -- Warning flags.

Universal Citation: TN Code § 69-9-504 (2019)
  • (a) A personal watercraft shall at all times be operated on the waters of Tennessee in a reasonable and prudent manner. Maneuvers that endanger life, limb, or property, or create a public nuisance shall constitute reckless operation of a vessel as provided in § 69-9-216(a) and shall be punished upon conviction as provided in § 69-9-219. These acts shall include, but not be limited to:

    • (1) Weaving through congested vessel traffic at high speed;

    • (2) Following within the wake, and closely behind, a vessel towing a person or persons on water skis or other water sport devices;

    • (3) Cutting between a boat and the person or persons being towed by that boat;

    • (4) Crossing in close proximity to the stern of another vessel or when visibility around the other vessel is obstructed;

    • (5) Steering a vessel toward any object or person in the water and turning sharply at close range so as to spray the object or person; and

    • (6) Jumping the wake of another vessel within one hundred feet (100′) of that vessel.

  • (b) If the operator of a vessel feels that the operation of a personal watercraft is creating a hazard to that vessel or a person being towed by that vessel, they shall exhibit an orange flag and wave it in such a manner to signal the operator of the personal watercraft to steer away, or to take such action that will end the hazard. The flag shall be no less than twelve inches (12″) by twelve inches (12″) in size.

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