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Old    Trevor Miller (tmill)      Join Date: May 2011       07-17-2011, 7:30 PM Reply   
I got a ticket to day for wake surfing with a comp vest out on lake sammamish. has anyone ever successfully fought this?
Old     (saberworks)      Join Date: Sep 2010       07-17-2011, 8:10 PM Reply   
I believe the law says you need a coast guard approved PFD; on what grounds would you fight it?
Old    Meathead (meathead65)      Join Date: Sep 2006       07-17-2011, 8:11 PM Reply   
What's to fight? Were you not aware that the vest needed to be CG approved?
Old    Ryan (Wakesounds)      Join Date: May 2011       07-17-2011, 8:28 PM Reply   
Trevor, I live over in Kenmore and got pulled over by the sheriff last week. They made sure that I had all the correct gear, then gave me a ticket for doing 10 mph in a 5 mph zone. Stupid! The vests/jackets need to be coast gaurd approved and a specific class for doing watersports. Sorry but it sounds like you might need a new one.
Old    Who Cares (liljohn)      Join Date: May 2007       07-17-2011, 9:38 PM Reply   
How bad do you want out of the ticket? You don't need a vest to surf if you paddle in. Then the driver should have got a ticket for operating a vessel to close to a swimmer. Catch 22. Just curious how much was the ticket?
Old    Michael Hunter (mhunter)      Join Date: Mar 2008       07-18-2011, 3:55 AM Reply   
Most states are Broke. The cops are out to raise money with tickets I doubt you will get out of this.
Old    Daniel (cowwboy)      Join Date: Jul 2008       07-18-2011, 6:01 AM Reply   
Hunter you are so right.
Heaven forbid they do like the rest of us and cut on some of the wasted budget, instead they go out of their way to screw their own resident to try to make up for the shortfall.
Old    Trevor Miller (tmill)      Join Date: May 2011       07-18-2011, 6:35 AM Reply   
ticket is 118, guess its time to find a new vest
Old    Trevor Miller (tmill)      Join Date: May 2011       07-18-2011, 6:38 AM Reply   
i asked the question because i have gotten out of many speeding tickets, i was wondering if anybody had the same kind of success one of these
Old    Big Nate (thesack)      Join Date: Mar 2008       07-18-2011, 6:52 AM Reply   
I would read what the law on the books actually says. Last year I was talking to the sheriff about vests and other laws here in Oregon. Apparently here the way the law actually reads no vest is required to be worn if you are of age during watersport activities. You still have to have the proper number of coast guard approved vests out for the number of people out with you that day. The sheriff may still give you a ticket for riding without a vest, because there philosophy is that you are an idiot for not wearing one so you can fight the ticket in court.
Old    Paul (psudy)      Join Date: Dec 2003       07-18-2011, 6:59 AM Reply   
Second Big Nate. I looked into the law a few years ago, and the person being pulled(this is in my state) doesn't actually need to be wearing anything as long as you have vests (CGA) in the boat.
Old    Trevor Miller (tmill)      Join Date: May 2011       07-18-2011, 7:27 AM Reply   
thats the kind of info i was looking for. i will check into it and post up what i find. Thanks nate and paul!!!
Old    Cobra Rob (CobraRob)      Join Date: Aug 2010       07-18-2011, 7:32 AM Reply   
That being said about Oregon. Two weekends ago I got a lecture from sheriff about having my lifejackets in the rear locker. He said that is unacceptable and the need to be accessible. I was like wtf, so you are saying if I have 12-18 people on the boat I need to have a bunch of lifejackets laying around on the floor and flying out of the boat if we are moving? Doesn't it make more sense to have them all in one place where everyone knows where they are? They are the only thing in that locker. He said yes. Not that it mattered since I put them all back in there before we drove off. Even the fact that I had a ticket from coast guard boarding the week before saying it was ok just seemed to piss him off. They need to find better things to do.
Old     (saberworks)      Join Date: Sep 2010       07-18-2011, 7:37 AM Reply   
Well, the specific law you allegedly violated should be written on the ticket (not just "no vest" but an RCW number). Will you post it here? The full RCW is available online so you can search for it and now I'm curious about what it actually says.
Old    Jman (jmanolinsky)      Join Date: Dec 2005       07-18-2011, 8:44 AM Reply   
I was just looking at the wording of this regulation this past weekend as I was putting my new sticker on my boat. For TN it said that if not wearing a vest while skiing, etc. that a vest must be available in the boat.
Old    GD (diamonddad)      Join Date: Mar 2010       07-18-2011, 8:56 AM Reply   
If you were surfing without the rope, I wonder if you are technically "being towed".
Old    Timmy! (timmyb)      Join Date: Apr 2007       07-18-2011, 9:30 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by diamonddad View Post
If you were surfing without the rope, I wonder if you are technically "being towed".
That's what I was wondering too! Just like someone stated above that if you are a "swimmer".
Old    Tim (srock)      Join Date: Mar 2002       07-18-2011, 9:38 AM Reply   
How do you eat an elephant, one bite at a time. The vest in reach thing has been popping up and is probably one bite toward the requirement that everyone wears a vest at all times. I just don't know who drives these requirements. In looking at the number of vest wearers its not the boating public I know. Maybe tree huggers in canoes who want power boating to become no fun.
Old    Paul (psudy)      Join Date: Dec 2003       07-18-2011, 9:54 AM Reply   
It is law here that the vest must be "readily accessable." It goes on to state that it cannot be stored in a compartment. Very stupid, and I will fight the ticket when I get one.
Old    Paul (psudy)      Join Date: Dec 2003       07-18-2011, 9:59 AM Reply   
I just pulled up the law in Oregon. It doesn't state that you have to be wearing it, just that you have to have one, and guess what. They have to be readily accessable as well.

Here you go.


All boats must carry at least one U.S. Coast Guard-approved personal flotation device/life jacket for every person aboard. Such devices must be in serviceable condition. They must not have any rips, tears or broken straps. All devices must also be kept readily available for use in an emergency situation. Personal flotation devices in a plastic bag or in a storage compartment are not readily available.
Children age 12 and under must wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket at all times while on open deck or cockpit of vessels that are underway. Non-swimmers should always wear PFDs. All devices must be of suitable size if they are designed to be worn. Adult devices do not satisfy legal requirements for children, just as children's devices to not meet flotation requirements for adults.
Persons being towed are considered on board the towing boat and there must be an approved Type I, II or III PFD aboard for each.
Old     (saberworks)      Join Date: Sep 2010       07-18-2011, 10:05 AM Reply   
In WA I found the law that reads that vests must be onboard and readily accessible (and CG approved). However, I think the definition of "readily accessible" is debatable. I take a WA STATE FERRY to work every day and it is also required by state law to have vests for each person. They are stored under seats (which are more difficult to open than v-drive compartments) and in drop bins on the car deck (you have to get out of your car and pull an overhead rope to make the vests drop). In WA at least that one may be an easy out.

I still haven't been able to find a law stating that a water skier must have a CSG vest on.
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       07-18-2011, 10:52 AM Reply   
On this boater's ed site, it says, "Every person being towed behind a vessel on water skis or other devices must wear a U.S. Coast Guard–approved personal flotation device (life jacket)."

Never heard of anyone fighting a ticket for this. Seems like a long shot to me.

I wear an RubberJungle vest all the time, which is Australian CG approved. Showed it to the local sheriff once. He wasn't terribly impressed by it. But he hasn't ticketed me for wearing it either.

Saw 2 guys surfing on Liberty yesterday. No spotter, no PFD, and threaded the needle between our raft up (like 40' or 50' away) an the shoreline (maybe 20' or 30 away)..... givin surfers a bad name.
Old     (saberworks)      Join Date: Sep 2010       07-18-2011, 11:01 AM Reply   
Yep, I've read it in the boaters manual and stuff, but no mention of the specific RCW or WAC.
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       07-18-2011, 11:03 AM Reply   
RCW 79A.60.170

(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.

Interesting.... doesn't say that the PFD has to be CG approved.
Old    Paul (psudy)      Join Date: Dec 2003       07-18-2011, 11:46 AM Reply   
What I posted was straight off the Oregon State Boating website. It should be pretty cut and dry to argue to a judge. It states that people being towed are considered "onboard," Being "onboard" does not require you to wear a jacket, it just has to be accessible. Therefore, you do not have to wear one while under tow.
Old    Small Light (stephan)      Join Date: Nov 2002       07-18-2011, 12:24 PM Reply   
Another thing to consider is that many of these vest laws have a loophole that states something along the lines of "unless the user is participating in or training for a competition". Might be something else to look for.
Old    jkw (lakesurfer)      Join Date: Jul 2009       07-18-2011, 12:58 PM Reply   
I think people arguing this type of ticket are only going to cause the local authority to pass more restrictive laws. I can just hear it now:

If these people are to stupid to wear a vest for their own safety, then they are obviously to stupid to operate a boat while pulling a tuber/skier/wakeboarder/surfer. I think we should just outlaw all of these activities and we wont have to worry about that idiot drowning when he knocks himself out trying some stupid trick.

Sorry for the vent, but it just kills me when people dont take the most simple precautions when out on the lake (BTW - I do understand the comp vest when at a competition because there are a lot of other people/boats around for safety).

Last edited by lakesurfer; 07-18-2011 at 1:01 PM.
Old     (saberworks)      Join Date: Sep 2010       07-18-2011, 2:06 PM Reply   
Hmm, if you look at the "DEFINITIONS" section of the RCW Bill K posted you will see this:

(21) "Personal flotation device" means a buoyancy device, life preserver, buoyant vest, ring buoy, or buoy cushion that is designed to float a person in the water and that is approved by the commission.

Not sure which "Commission" they're talking about. But most likely if you fight the ticket on the grounds that the law doesn't say "USCG Approved" and that you were wearing a PFD, maybe the judge will be too lame to look back at the definitions section.
Old    Kirk (kirk)      Join Date: May 2003       07-18-2011, 4:32 PM Reply   
I received a ticket for a "Non-CGA" a few years ago , took my lumps , paid the ticket.
Lesson learned...
Old    Tdc_worm C (tdc_worm)      Join Date: Sep 2002       07-18-2011, 4:54 PM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by lakesurfer View Post
Sorry for the vent, but it just kills me when people dont take the most simple precautions when out on the lake (BTW - I do understand the comp vest when at a competition because there are a lot of other people/boats around for safety).
I completely agree. And given the fact that more recreational surfers and swimmers drown than wake boarders every year, we should pursue legislation forcing them to wear CGA vests and only participate in their activities while using the buddy system. Furthermore, one of the participants shall be ACLS certified or the activity will be considered illegal. Surfers and swimmers are clearly have not be informed of the dangers of water and we must protect them from themselves.

On second thoughts, please feel free to protect those on your vessel as you see fit and leave the responsibility of personal choice to mine.
Old    Aaron (aarond0083)      Join Date: Apr 2007       07-18-2011, 5:07 PM Reply   
Personally I'd just pay up.
$118 is the cost of your nice new USGA vest.

In NC we surf without vests and the wildlife guys sit in the cove sometimes to watch us ride. I am always courteous to guys that do their jobs and don't act like hard @sses. A bottle of water offered during a safety inspection on a holiday weekend goes a long way.
Old    Trevor Miller (tmill)      Join Date: May 2011       07-19-2011, 7:59 AM Reply   
so I did some research last night. I got sited on a Bellevue municipal code. It clearly states that the vest MUST be USCGA. The only possible loop hole would be in the definition of waterskiing were it defines waterskiing as the "physical act of being towed." I don’t think I will fight it on those grounds unless I find something in public records that shows someone successfully fighting it that way in the past.(very doubtful)
As for as the law in Washington the law does not directly says that the vest has to be USCGA but it does say that it has to be approved my the "commission." which i think is defined as Parks and Rec(i cant remember for sure). Any of their publications only state that vests have to be USCGA so unless i took it to them and got them to approve the vest i am sunk there too.

So i bought a new vest last night and will probably be sending in the ticket this week. lesson learned
Old    Greg Taylor (gregtay)      Join Date: Aug 2008       07-19-2011, 9:58 AM Reply   
I am kind of surpised the Sheriff on Sammamish bothered you at all... could he tell it wasn't a USCGA vest from 200 yards away (I mean... does it look obvious that what you were wearing wasn't USCGA? (I have a non-USCGA comp vest but you wouldn't be able to tell the differance enless you were really close.) Did they stop you just to do an inspection and this is what they found or did they bring up the vest right from the start? I have foudn the guys out on Sammamish are usually pretty cool... In fact it's the one lake where i don't feel like they pull you voer for every lame little thing.... very sad to hear they are changing their approach.
Old    Greg Taylor (gregtay)      Join Date: Aug 2008       07-19-2011, 10:01 AM Reply   
... and the other thing about lakes like Sammamish is remembering all the rules... you need to know all the boating laws from King County, Redmond, Sammamish, and Bellevue... and they aren't all the same. We swim at Idylewood park in the early mornings (triathlon training) and the sherrif will show up and hand out tickets for swimming more than 50 feet from shore or more than 50 ft from a boat (we swim along the shoreline.. but more than 50ft out.. but inside the no wake bouys)... it's not a king county reg.. but it is a bellvue regulation that Redmond adopted.. so they give a citation based on that. According to the Washington State law and King County law we are allowed to swim... but not according to the local city law. :-/
Old    Nu Bu (05mobiuslsv)      Join Date: Apr 2006       07-19-2011, 10:13 AM Reply   
I think the Sherrif's on Samm are pretty cool, at least they are to me. I'm sure to give them the courtesy wave when we're passing and they do the same. They are always ramping up and messing with people more at the beginning of the season, and unfortunately now is pretty much the beginning of the season. I had one of them tell me one time they do it to minimize the people that don't have a clue on the lake. I like that personally. They one thing they hate is to tow people in, so they do the safety checks and that's when they look for everything else.
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       07-19-2011, 11:27 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by gregtay View Post
... and the other thing about lakes like Sammamish is remembering all the rules... you need to know all the boating laws from King County, Redmond, Sammamish, and Bellevue... and they aren't all the same. We swim at Idylewood park in the early mornings (triathlon training) and the sherrif will show up and hand out tickets for swimming more than 50 feet from shore or more than 50 ft from a boat (we swim along the shoreline.. but more than 50ft out.. but inside the no wake bouys)... it's not a king county reg.. but it is a bellvue regulation that Redmond adopted.. so they give a citation based on that. According to the Washington State law and King County law we are allowed to swim... but not according to the local city law. :-/
I lived in Lakewood Shores for like 7 yrs (2 condo complexes over from Idylwood). The problem with the swimming is that the boaters can't see you. I had the same problem there & have it here too. If we're out riding in the early morning or late evening, driving into the sun, the glare off the water is bad enough that it's tough to see anything. Especially when the swimmers are wearing a dark colored cap.
We have ONE guy on the lake I live on now who ties a bright yellow rubber ducky around his waist & drags it behind him as he swims. Then there are a couple who will wear a light / bright colored cap. Then dozens of others who wear whatever they please. At least if their only 50' out, it's only when your coming or going to the dock that you are near them. But too many of them swim way out by or even past the speed bouys.
I won't be surprised if/when someone gets hit some day.
It's already happened on Sammamish.

Last edited by bill_airjunky; 07-19-2011 at 11:34 AM.
Old    Greg Taylor (gregtay)      Join Date: Aug 2008       07-19-2011, 12:03 PM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by bill_airjunky View Post
I lived in Lakewood Shores for like 7 yrs (2 condo complexes over from Idylwood). The problem with the swimming is that the boaters can't see you. I had the same problem there & have it here too. If we're out riding in the early morning or late evening, driving into the sun, the glare off the water is bad enough that it's tough to see anything. Especially when the swimmers are wearing a dark colored cap.
We have ONE guy on the lake I live on now who ties a bright yellow rubber ducky around his waist & drags it behind him as he swims. Then there are a couple who will wear a light / bright colored cap. Then dozens of others who wear whatever they please. At least if their only 50' out, it's only when your coming or going to the dock that you are near them. But too many of them swim way out by or even past the speed bouys.
I won't be surprised if/when someone gets hit some day.
It's already happened on Sammamish.
Yep.. that's why we have to be careful.. I wear a bright yellow cap. We swim along the no wake bouys in front of the park very (VERY) early in the morning. Yes.. that's when people are out for morning runs but there is absolutly no reason to run a boat close to the bouys in front of the park early in the morning... the entire lake is flat. We have had a few guys buzz us for no reason at all... but when you are swimming is it very easy to hear a boat nearby so we are always very aware of a boat running out there in the morning near us and if it gets close we head to a bouy or make sure we head towards shore. (when open water swimming you are looking up out of the water to sight ever few strokes... so you know what's out there.) There is no way i would swim across the lake or swim out there any time after 8am.. but 5:30 on a Tuesday morning is fine... most of the guys out boating on the north end 1) live on the lake and know the lake well 2) aren't boating idots. Unfortuantly there's not a ton of options for open water swim training which is critical for triathlons... Ironman is 2.4 miles of open water swimming with 3000 of your best friends trying to drown you.

Last edited by gregtay; 07-19-2011 at 12:09 PM.
Old    Andy Graham (ottog1979)      Join Date: Apr 2007       07-19-2011, 12:39 PM Reply   
Quote:
we swim along the shoreline.. but more than 50ft out.. but inside the no wake bouys
... like the others above, I was going to say, you need to be very careful doing this. I got run over by a boat doing the same thing and regardless of the freak circumstance, won't be making that mistake again. See the third post in this string: http://www.wakeworld.com/MB/Discus/m...19/452243.html

Also related: http://www.wakeworld.com/forum/showthread.php?t=499856

Last edited by ottog1979; 07-19-2011 at 12:44 PM.
Old    Ryan (Wakesounds)      Join Date: May 2011       07-19-2011, 1:31 PM Reply   
Nubu, I second the courtesy wave to the police just for the sake of being friendly and keeping them in a good mood. The problem is that sometimes when you give them that attention they decide to forward that with a "come over here" wave. Last week I did the wave to the sheriff boat as I was passing by, then they flagged me in and gave me a ticket for having a SMALL wake in a no wake zone on lake washington. I guess you can't win em all!

Trevor, I've heard that if you send in the ticket saying you did the infraction but there were circumstances, then they are quick to cut it in half so I hear. Personally what I would reccomend is to buy a new jacket and write a statement stating the circumstances and corrective action, put that letter in the envelope with the ticket and they should at least give you a partial break which helps. ...And you need a new jacket anyway so it couldn't hurt.
Old    Nu Bu (05mobiuslsv)      Join Date: Apr 2006       07-19-2011, 1:54 PM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wakesounds View Post
Nubu, I second the courtesy wave to the police just for the sake of being friendly and keeping them in a good mood. The problem is that sometimes when you give them that attention they decide to forward that with a "come over here" wave. Last week I did the wave to the sheriff boat as I was passing by, then they flagged me in and gave me a ticket for having a SMALL wake in a no wake zone on lake washington. I guess you can't win em all!

Trevor, I've heard that if you send in the ticket saying you did the infraction but there were circumstances, then they are quick to cut it in half so I hear. Personally what I would reccomend is to buy a new jacket and write a statement stating the circumstances and corrective action, put that letter in the envelope with the ticket and they should at least give you a partial break which helps. ...And you need a new jacket anyway so it couldn't hurt.

I'm talking about Lake Sammamish. Results may vary, works for me .
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       07-19-2011, 2:09 PM Reply   
Greg,
It sounds like your being safer than most of the other swimmers. I can't tell you how many swimmers we see way further out than 50' from the shoreline, and not dressed for the situation. Being a boat you should be very aware from both perspectives. And hopefully be telling all your swimming buddies about it too.

I guess someone died off the Lakewood Shores dock a couple years ago. I never did hear what the situation was.

But when I was living there a guy was hit just off the Sammamish Beach Club docks. The boat driver was a guy I knew casually. They charged him with homicide by watercraft, even though he had no clue the guy was even in the water (as I recall it was close to dusk), much less intended to do it. He was eventually acquitted but that whole process was a huge ordeal.

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