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Sound Producing Devices

Illustration of signaling devices, including bell, aerasol air horn, electric-powered air horn, and whistle.
Signalling Devices

The navigation rules require sound signals to be made under certain circumstances. Meeting, crossing and overtaking situations described in the Navigation Rules section are examples of when sound signals are required. Recreational vessels are also required to sound signals during periods of reduced visibility.

When operating on Inland Waters of the United States, vessels 39.4 feet/12 meters or more in length are required to carry on board a whistle or horn, and a bell.

Note: The requirement to carry a bell on board no longer applies to vessels operating on International Waters.

Any vessel less than 39.4 feet/12 meters in length may carry a whistle or horn, or some other means to make an efficient sound signal to signal your intentions and to signal your position in periods of reduced visibility.

Therefore, any vessel less than 39.4 feet/12 meters in length is required to make an efficient sound signal to signal your intentions and to signal your position in periods of reduced visibility.

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