Water skiing safety — Requirements.
(1) The purpose of this section is to promote safety in water skiing on the waters of Washington state, provide a means of ensuring safe water skiing and promote the enjoyment of water skiing.
(2) No vessel operator may tow or attempt to tow a water skier on any waters of Washington state unless such craft shall be occupied by at least an operator and an observer. The observer shall continuously observe the person or persons being towed and shall display a flag immediately after the towed person or persons fall into the water, and during the time preparatory to skiing while the person or persons are still in the water. Such flag shall be a bright red or brilliant orange color, measuring at least twelve inches square, mounted on a pole not less than twenty-four inches long and displayed as to be visible from every direction. This subsection does not apply to a personal watercraft, the design of which makes no provision for carrying an operator or any other person on board, and that is actually operated by the person or persons being towed. Every remote-operated personal watercraft shall have a flag attached which meets the requirements of this subsection. Except as provided under RCW 79A.60.020, a violation of this subsection is an infraction under chapter 7.84 RCW.
(3) The observer and the operator shall not be the same person. The observer shall be an individual who meets the minimum qualifications for an observer established by rules of the commission. Except as provided under RCW 79A.60.020, a violation of this subsection is an infraction under chapter 7.84 RCW.
(4) No person shall engage or attempt to engage in water skiing without wearing a personal flotation device. Except as provided under RCW 79A.60.020, a violation of this subsection is an infraction under chapter 7.84 RCW.
(5) No person shall engage or attempt to engage in water skiing, or operate any vessel to tow a water skier, on the waters of Washington state during the period from one hour after sunset until one hour prior to sunrise. A violation of this subsection is a misdemeanor, punishable as provided under RCW 9.92.030.
(6) No person engaged in water skiing either as operator, observer, or skier, shall conduct himself or herself in a reckless manner that willfully or wantonly endangers, or is likely to endanger, any person or property. A violation of this subsection is a misdemeanor as provided under RCW 9.92.030.
(7) The requirements of subsections (2), (3), (4), and (5) of this section shall not apply to persons engaged in tournaments, competitions, or exhibitions that have been authorized or otherwise permitted by the appropriate agency having jurisdiction and authority to authorize such events.
[2000 c 11 § 99; 1993 c 244 § 15; 1990 c 231 § 1; 1989 c 241 § 1. Formerly RCW 88.12.125, 88.12.080, and 88.12.070.]
| Intent -- 1993 c 244: See note following RCW 79A.60.010.|
Effective date -- 1990 c 231: "This act shall take effect July 1, 1990." [1990 c 231 § 4.]
Severability -- 1990 c 231: "If any provision of this act or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the act or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected." [1990 c 231 § 5.]