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Wisconsin offers boat-rental certification

Wisconsin residents and visitors who need a temporary boating certificate to rent a boat or personal watercraft can now complete a new Wisconsin boat rental course.

"This new course covers all the information you'll need to know to receive your temporary boating certificate and it can be taken on a smartphone, tablet or computer," Roy Zellmer, boating law administrator for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, said in a statement. "It will help ensure we're teaching boaters how to be responsible, safety-conscious operators."

The Wisconsin-approved online training covers Wisconsin legal requirements and some safe boating practices and the official boat rental course features realistic illustrations, interactive animations and live-action video. Students learn safe boating skills such as casting off and docking, understanding traffic laws on the water, Wisconsin-specific rules and regulations and dealing with emergencies.

Students 16 or older can complete the Wisconsin boat rental course as quickly as they would like, starting and stopping at their convenience. Most students can complete the course and exam in one to two hours. Students pay a one-time fee only when they pass the test and they can take the test as many times as they need to.

After they print out the certificate, students can legally rent a boat or personal watercraft and operate it on Wisconsin waters. Temporary boating certificates are valid until the end of the calendar year in which the course is completed.

Department of Natural Resource recreational safety specialists recommend that all boat operators complete a boating safety course before heading out on the water.

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