Provisions in the Recreational Craft Directive

The Recreational Craft Directive is a law that was established and enacted by the European Union in the mid-1990s. It contains details about the ideal specifications for water craft such as boats and yachts. This is an attempt of the European Union to promote safety of the populace, especially when traveling Europe by sea. Up until today, the provisions stated in the directive are still in effect and being applied by boat manufacturers across the continent.

Boat Design. The Recreational Craft Directive categorizes all water craft under its scope under four categories. In other words, creation of boats and other water craft are classified depending on the nature of the water body such as wave height and wind speed. Designs must conform to their respective categories so that mishaps are avoided when sailing.

Life Rafts. The directive also stresses the importance of carrying a number of life rafts based on the capacity of the craft. Any water craft that is longer than six meters must carry life rafts to accommodate passengers and crew in the event of a maritime accident. This is a just provision because being marooned at sea can have serious health and mental implications.

Emissions. As global warming has become a critical issue, the Recreational Craft Directive sets limits on the emissions produced by recreational craft. Harmful gases such as carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, and nitrogen oxides must be limited for engines in water crafts. This shows environmental awareness is also part of the objectives of the directive.

Noise Levels. Engine noise in recreational water craft must not exceed more than 75 decibels according to the Recreational Craft Directive. The limit can also be as low as 67 dB depending on the output of the engine in the craft. This is to ensure a pleasant trip especially in remote areas in Europe where silence is a virtue.

Documentation. All recreational craft that are manufactured must undergo proper documenting such as factory labeling and…

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