The California Department of Boating and Waterways is considering mandatory boater education.
The department is hosting two public forums; the first meeting is set for July 20 in Los Angeles and the second is scheduled for Aug. 17 in Sacramento.
Information will be presented on what other states have done regarding boating education requirements and their impact on boating safety.
“Cal Boating is holding these sessions to facilitate an informed public dialogue on the issue,” director Raynor Tsuneyoshi said in a statement.
Mandatory boater education has been gaining ground throughout the country with more than 20 states requiring some type of certification.
According to the U.S. Coat Guard, 63 percent of California boaters have never taken a boating safety course.
The department recently launched a media and outreach campaign to encourage responsible boating. The campaign includes radio spots, posters and mobile billboards at marinas, and the newly designed www.boatsmarter.com.