Boating safety, mandatory for many, offered in East Providence


A boating skills and seamanship course will be offered at East Providence High School for eight weeks starting on September 10. The class, which will meet Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m., is more than a great resource for both new and experienced boaters: If you were born after 1986, or are any age and operate a "personal watercraft," you are required by law to take this class.

According to Don Sullivan, of the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla #72, the sponsoring agency, state law requires boaters born after 1986 operating any motor vessel in Rhode Island waters, or persons of any age operating Jet Skis or other so-called personal watercraft, to carry proof of completion of this course with them, any time they are out on the water  operating a motor vessel.

The course costs $50 per person and satisfies the law in the states of Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. For more information, please call Don Sullivan at 401/529-6361 or email


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A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.