Party Boat on Lake Travis? Make Sure Your Ride Is Legal

Lake Travis boats

Thinking about joining a party boat this holiday weekend on Lake Travis? A recent KXAN story reports that some Lake Travis party boat operators are breaking the law and not following the rules party boat operators are required to follow.

The story said that last month, a group of paying customers was left high and dry – and without a boat party – when the Travis County Game Warden caught a boat driver near Mansfield Dam without the required documentation to operate a party boat. The driver received several citations and was arrested for outstanding warrants.

Texas Parks & Wildlife maintains the Texas Party Boat Operator Licensing Program, which includes mandates such as a boater education course, observation and training, personal requirements, and an exam. The party boat operator license is required for boats over 30 feet long and carrying more than six passengers.

KXAN quoted Pete Clark, owner of Just For Fun Watercraft Rental, who has been in the party boat business for nearly 30 years: “It’s near and dear to my heart because water safety is important to our industry, the more people that get hurt, the worse it is for our industry.”

Clark advises consumers to ask party boat operators whether they are in compliance with the law. Boats also should have signs, such as an instructional sheet for putting on life jackets, and documents regarding insurance, license, registration, and inspection.