Feature | April 17, 2019

New Recreational Life Jacket Standards

Since 2014, the Coast Guard and Transport Canada have been working to harmonize Recreational Life Jacket standards.  The new standards require a transition from Types Codes (I, II, III, V) to Levels (50, 70, 100, 150).  The first of the new Level 70 life jackets will be hitting the consumer market this boating season so there are a few things you will want to know:

  • Type I, II, III, and V Life Jackets may remain in service as long as they are serviceable.
  • The new label design relies on pictograms.
  • Life Jackets may continue to be manufactured under Type Codes but will use the new label design.
  • Boaters should be made aware to check the label for limitations of use.
  • Lower Level numbers generally offer greater mobility, comfort, and style with good flotation for most people.

Higher Level numbers generally offer greater flotation, turning, and stability in the water.