Title 33 NAVIGATION AND NAVIGABLE WATERS
PART 181 MANUFACTURER REQUIREMENTS
§181.1 Purpose and applicability; preemptive
This part prescribes requirements for the certification of boats and
associated equipment and identification of boats to which 46 U.S.C.
chapter 43 applies. The regulations in this part have the preemptive
effect described in 46 U.S.C. 4306.
[USCG-2003-14963, 77 FR 18703, Mar. 28, 2012]
As used in this part:
Associated equipment means:
(1) Any system, part, or component of a boat as originally manufactured
or any similar part or component manufactured or sold for replacement,
repair, or improvement of such system, part, or component;
(2) Any accessory or equipment for, or appurtenance to, a boat; and
(3) Any marine safety article, accessory, or equipment intended for use
by a person on board a boat; but
(4) Excluding radio equipment.
Boat means any vessel—
(1) Manufactured or used primarily for noncommercial use;
(2) Leased, rented, or chartered to another for the latter's
noncommercial use; or
(3) Operated as an uninspected passenger vessel subject to the
requirements of 46 CFR chapter I, subchapter C.
Date of certification means the
date on which a boat or item of associated equipment is certified to
comply with all applicable U.S. Coast Guard safety standards in effect on
Date of manufacture means the
month and year during which construction or assembly of a boat or item of
associated equipment begins.
Manufacturer means any person
(1) The manufacture, construction, or assembly of boats or associated
(2) The importation of boats, associated equipment, or the components
thereof, into the United States for sale.
Model year means the period
beginning August 1 of any year and ending on July 31 of the following
year. Each model year is designated by the year in which it ends.
Private label merchandiser means
any person engaged in the business of selling and distributing, under his
own trade name, boats, or items of associated equipment manufactured by
State means a State of the
United States, Guam, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands,
American Samoa, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern
Mariana Islands, and any other territory or possession of the United
[CGD 96-026, 61 FR 33669, June 28, 1996; 61 FR 36786, July
12, 1996, as amended by USCG-1999;-5040, May 15, 2002; USCG-2003-14963, 77
FR 18703, Mar. 28, 2012]
§181.4 Incorporation by reference.
(a) Certain materials are incorporated by reference into this part with
the approval of the Director of the Federal Register in accordance with 5
U.S.C. 552(a). To enforce any edition other than the one listed in
paragraph (b) of this section, notice of change must be published in the
and the material made available to the public. All approved material is
available for inspection at the Coast Guard Headquarters. Contact
Commandant (CG-ENG-4), Attn: Lifesaving and Fire Safety Division, U.S.
Coast Guard Stop 7509, 2703 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE., Washington,
DC 20593-7509. It is also available at the National Archives and Records
Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this
material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to:
All approved material is available from the sources listed in paragraph
(b) of this section.
(b) The materials approved for incorporation by reference in this part,
and the sections affected are:
[CGD 81-023, 55 FR 32034, Aug. 6, 1990, as amended by CGD
93-055, 61 FR 13927, Mar. 28, 1996; CGD 96-026, 61 FR 33669, June 28,
1996; USCG-2000-7223, 65 FR 40059, June 29, 2000; 69 FR 18803, Apr. 9,
2004; USCG-2004-18057, 69 FR 34926, June 23, 2004; USCG-2010-0351, 75 FR
36287, June 25, 2010; USCG-2014-0410, 79 FR 38448, July 7, 2014]
Subpart B—Manufacturer Certification of Compliance
§181.5 Purpose and applicability.
This subpart prescribes requirements for the certification of boats and
associated equipment to which 46 U.S.C. Chapter 43 applies and to which a
safety standard prescribed in Part 183 of this chapter applies.
[CGD 85-002, 51 FR 37573, Oct. 23, 1986]
§181.7 Compliance certification label
Unless there is affixed to it a certification label that contains the
information required by §181.15:
(a) No person who manufactures, constructs, or assembles a boat or
associated equipment may deliver that boat or equipment for the purpose of
(b) No person may import into the United States any boat or associated
(c) No person engaged in the business of selling or distributing boats
or associated equipment may sell or offer for sale any boat or associated
§181.9 Affixing labels.
(a) Each manufacturer of a boat or item of associated equipment to
which a standard or regulation prescribed in Part 183 of this chapter
applies shall affix a certification label that contains the information
required by §181.15 to that boat or equipment before it:
(1) Leaves the place of manufacture for the purpose of sale; or
(2) Is imported.
(b) The manufacturer of a boat or item of associated equipment that is
sold to a private label merchandiser may, at the option of the private
label merchandiser, affix a certification label identifying the private
label merchandiser as the manufacturer before the boat or item of
associated equipment leaves the place of manufacture.
§181.11 Exceptions to labeling requirement.
(a) This part does not apply to boats or associated equipment intended
solely for export, and so labeled, tagged, or marked on the boat or
equipment and on the outside of the container, if any, which is exported.
(b) If an item of associated equipment is so small that a certification
label that meets the requirements in §181.15 cannot be affixed to it, a
certification label that contains the information required by §181.15 may
be printed on the smallest container in which the item is packed or on a
slip packed with the item.
(c) This subpart does not apply to any outboard motor or starting
control to which §183.710 of this chapter applies.
[CGD 72-60, 37 FR 15779, Aug. 4, 1972, as amended by CGD
79-137, 46 FR 3515, Jan. 15, 1981; 46 FR 9579, Jan. 29, 1981]
§181.13 Removal of labels.
No person may remove a label required by this part or remove or alter
any information on a label required by this part, unless authorized by the
§181.15 Contents of labels.
(a) Each label required by §181.7 must contain:
(1) The name and address of the manufacturer or private label
merchandiser who certifies that the boat or item of associated equipment
complies with the standards prescribed in Part 183 of this subchapter; and
(2) Except as provided in paragraph (c) of this section, the words:
(i) “This (insert ‘Boat’ or ‘Equipment’) Complies With U.S. Coast Guard
Safety Standards In Effect On (insert date of certification as prescribed
in paragraph (b) of this section)”; or
(ii) If the item being certified is a boat, the label may show the
words, “This Boat Complies With U.S. Coast Guard Safety Standards In
Effect On The Date of Certification.”
(b) Date of certification must be no earlier than the date on which
construction or assembly began and no later than the date on which the
boat or item of associated equipment leaves the place of manufacture or
assembly or import for the purposes of sale.
(d) Except as provided in paragraph (e) of this section, the
manufacturer may, in addition to the information required by paragraphs
(a) and (b) of this section, display on the certification label any or all
of the following information:
(1) Model name or designation.
(2) Hull identification number (if a boat) or serial number (if an item
of associated equipment).
(3) Model year.
(e) Display of the hull identification number on the certification
label does not satisfy the display requirements of §181.29.
(f) Each boat which displays a maximum horsepower capacity determined
in accordance with §183.53(b) must, in addition to the information
required by paragraphs (a), (b) and (d) of this section, display on the
certification label, the following statement in letters no less than
one-quarter of an inch in height:
THIS BOAT IS INTENDED FOR RACING AND OTHER HIGH PERFORMANCE ACTIVITIES.
THE SKILL REQUIRED MAY EXCEED THE ABILITIES OF SOME OPERATORS.
[CGD 72-60, 37 FR 15779, Aug. 4, 1972, as amended by CGD
83-012, 49 FR 39327, Oct. 5, 1984; CGD 85-002, 51 FR 37573, Oct. 23, 1986;
USCG-1999-5832, 64 FR 34716, June 29, 1999]
§181.17 Label numbers and letters.
Letters and numbers on each label must:
(a) Be no less than one-eighth of an inch in height; and
(b) Contrast with the basic color of the label, except that the date of
certification may be permanently stamped, engraved, or embossed on the
§181.19 Construction of labels.
(a) Each label must be made of material that can withstand exposure to
water, oil, salt spray, direct sunlight, heat, cold, and wear expected in
normal use of the boat or item of associated equipment without
deterioration of legibility.
(b) Each label must be made of material that shows visible traces of
the alteration or removal of information on the label.