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Boating Safety Program News and Courses

USCG Auxiliary Vessel Safety Checks and California Dockwalker Environmental Educational Kits are available by contacting James Fitzgerald at (707) 875-1933 or at


The UCD/BML Boating Safety Program currently offers two boating course formats. Boating Safety Courses can be scheduled for UCD researchers to meet individual or group project needs by contacting James Fitzgerald at (707) 875-1933, or email

Courses may include:

  • Field safety visits and consultations for project specific boating needs are available.
  • Exclusive training dates may be arranged for focused or project-specific small groups. UCD/BML Principal Investigators, Project Managers and Laboratory Supervisors may request a training date.
  • Two National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) courses are offered and can be adapted to suit group needs.
  • UCD/BML personnel may attend one of the scheduled classes but you must register by notifying the Boating Safety Staff.
  • Hands-on use of boats is a great training advantage; UCD/BML Boating Safety Staff can organize a course at your worksite with your own boats by request.
  • For any of these options, please contact Boating Safety Staff.

California Department of Boating and Waterways, "California Course for Safe Boating"

This open book course is available by mail and online for self-administration, or we can provide the course materials with a classroom presentation. This training can be held at labs and field stations on or off the UCD campus. Following the classroom session, participants attend a field training day to apply the hands-on skills. Successful completion of the course exam will provide participants with a State of California Certificate of Completion. The field training offers participants exposure and hands-on experience with basic safety practices, survival/personnel recovery methods, and common boating operations. Additional days may be scheduled to facilitate research-specific practices, such as diving, towing, animal/organism collections or instrument deployment and recovery. The curriculum of this course may be adapted to address your specific requirements.

UC Davis, Motor Boat Operator Training Course (MOTC)

The UCD Motor Boat Operator Certification Course (MOTC) is a four-day course of instruction recognized by the Scientific Boating Safety Association “SBSA” and is equivalent to the U.S. Department of Interior Motor Boat Operator Certification Course (MOCC) and includes classroom, field lectures, and hands-on training. Typically the course is hosted at UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory, however, the training can also be exported to a variety of field locations. Additional modules can also be provided upon request, such as the Open Water Module (OWM), River Module (RM), Airboat Module (ABM). The MOTC also includes state-specific National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) approved boating courses. In addition to hands-on boat operator training, participants receive instruction in state/federal boating laws, legal requirements for outfitting boats, launch, and retrieval, towing and trailer backing, marlinespike seamanship, rescue and survival skills, fire-fighting, vessel troubleshooting and maintenance, field planning, and risk management. Successful completion of the course provides participants with a five-year certification, recognized by the SBSA and US-DOI and NOAA as well as state agencies. The instructor course, MOITC is also available for experienced advanced boat operators that possess the aptitude and ability for human performance improvement and have the need to support watercraft safety instruction within their department.

Tuition Rates

All training rates are subject to a Non-University Differential (NUD) assessment for non-University of California clients.

1. Motorboat Operator Training Course & CA Course for Safe Boating*

  • UC Rate-$1000.00 per person.

2. California Course for Safe Boating with Field Skills Training*

3. American Safety & Health Institute (ASHI) - Emergency Care Training: CPR, First Aid, AED, Emergency O2*

* The Over-the-Water California Course for Safe Boating, Specialized Boating Modules and Emergency Care Training rates are dependent on location and student numbers. 

* Contact the Office of Boating Safety for scheduling and current course rates. 

We look forward to working with you and wish you another safe and productive year on the water.

James Fitzgerald, ph (707) 875-1933.