Vessel Safety Checks

VSC-2017 stickerIs your boat safe? You can now have it checked for free. Certified Vessel Examiners of the Greenwich Sail & Power Squadron can perform a free Vessel Safety Check on your boat to make sure it meets the federal, state, and local requirements.

All boaters should have an annual VSC performed on their vessels to ensure that current requirements are met and all equipment is up to date and in good operating condition.

For more information or to schedule a Vessel Safety Check on your boat,
contact us at or visit the United States Power Squadrons® website page.

Checklist for a Vessel Safety Check in CT

  • Current Registration/Documentation Papers
    • Registered boat: state-issued numbers and current decal permanently affixed to forward half of vessel
    • Documented boat: current state decal permanently affixed to forward half of vessel & documentation numbers permanently affixed to interior
  • CT Safe Boating Certificate (CT requirement)
  • PFDs
    • One USCG-approved life jacket appropriately sized for each person on board
    • Plus one throwable
  • Visual Distress Signals (flares)
    • Minimum of 3 unexpired day/night flares
  • Fire Extinguishers
    • Boats less than 26 ft: one Type B Size 1
    • 26 ft to 40 ft: two Type B-1 or one Type B Size 2
    • 40 ft to 65 ft: three Type B-1 or one B-1 & B-2
  • Gas Powered Inboard/IO Vessels only
    • Blower & ducts
    • Backfire flame control
  • Sound-Producing Device (Horn)
    • Red/green lights forward
    • White light visible 360° (combo or all-around)
    • 360° all-around anchor light
  • Navigation Lights & Anchor Light
  • Pollution Placard (26 ft and over)
  • Marpol Trash Placard (26 ft and over)
  • Trash-Management Plan (40 ft and over)
  • Marine Sanitation Device (head)
    • Any installed head must be USCG-approved
  • Navigation Rules
    • Complete copy of nav rules are required onboard vessels over 39.4 ft
  • Good over-all condition of vessel as applies to safety

How to Become a Certified Vessel Examiner

If you are a Power Squadron member and would like to become a Vessel Examiner, contact our VSC Chair, Susan Ryan, at

Vessel Examiners must take a course and pass a written test. They must also perform five Vessel Safety Checks under the supervision of a currently qualified Vessel Examiner. VEs are required to perform a minimum of five Vessel Checks each year in order to stay qualified.