® | Official Canadian Boating License

Flotation Devices for Children

Children under 12 are required to wear flotation devices or lifejackets at all times unless they are in an enclosed area.
Keep in mind the following:

  • A child on a boat putting on a lifejacket with help from their mother. Lifejackets are fitted according to the weight and size of the child. Test the fit by picking up the child by the shoulders of the lifejacket. A lifejacket should fit snugly and not ride up over the chin or ears. If there are more than 7.6 cm (3”) between your child’s shoulders and the device, it is too big and could do more harm than good.
  • Special features of children’s lifejackets include a strap between the legs to keep the flotation device in place, a supportive collar for the child’s head, reflective tape for visibility, safety straps with buckles, and waist ties or elastic gathers in the front and back.
REMEMBER: Children should always wear a lifejacket or PFD (unless they are in an enclosed area) and be within your reach. Set a good example and wear yours every time you are on the water.

Study Guide