Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM), page 534

Index   533 -- Page 534 -- 535

AIM                                                                                                        12/10/15

NOTE-                                                      of all vessels and avoid impeding their navigation.
No FAA standard exists for the appearance of the runway    The CFR requires, in part, that aircraft operating on
half-way sign. FIG 7-5-1 shows a graphical depiction of    the water ". . . shall, insofar as possible, keep clear of
a typical runway half-way sign.                            all vessels and avoid impeding their navigation, and
                                                           shall give way to any vessel or other aircraft that is
7-5-8. Seaplane Safety                                     given the right-of-way . . . ." This means that a
                                                           seaplane should avoid boats and commercial
  a. Acquiring a seaplane class rating affords access      shipping when on the water. If on a collision course,
to many areas not available to landplane pilots.           the seaplane should slow, stop, or maneuver to the
Adding a seaplane class rating to your pilot certificate   right, away from the bow of the oncoming vessel.
can be relatively uncomplicated and inexpensive.           Also, while on the surface with an engine running, an
However, more effort is required to become a safe,         aircraft must give way to all nonpowered vessels.
efficient, competent "bush" pilot. The natural hazards     Since a seaplane in the water may not be as
of the backwoods have given way to modern                  maneuverable as one in the air, the aircraft on the
man-made hazards. Except for the far north, the            water has right-of-way over one in the air, and one
available bodies of water are no longer the exclusive      taking off has right-of-way over one landing. A
domain of the airman. Seaplane pilots must be              seaplane is exempt from the USCG safety equipment
vigilant for hazards such as electric power lines,         requirements, including the requirements for Person-
power, sail and rowboats, rafts, mooring lines, water      al Flotation Devices (PFD). Requiring seaplanes on
skiers, swimmers, etc.                                     the water to comply with USCG equipment
                                                           requirements in addition to the FAA equipment
FIG 7-5-1 requirements would be an unnecessary burden on Typical Runway Half-way Sign seaplane owners and operators. c. Unless they are under Federal jurisdiction, navigable bodies of water are under the jurisdiction of the state, or in a few cases, privately owned. Unless they are specifically restricted, aircraft have as much right to operate on these bodies of water as other vessels. To avoid problems, check with Federal or local officials in advance of operating on unfamiliar waters. In addition to the agencies listed in TBL 7-5-1, the nearest Flight Standards District Office can usually offer some practical suggestions as well as regulatory information. If you land on a restricted body of water because of an inflight emergency, or in ignorance of the restrictions you have violated, report as quickly as practical to the nearest local official having jurisdiction and explain b. Seaplane pilots must have a thorough under- your situation. standing of the right-of-way rules as they apply to aircraft versus other vessels. Seaplane pilots are d. When operating a seaplane over or into remote expected to know and adhere to both the U.S. Coast areas, appropriate attention should be given to Guard's (USCG) Navigation Rules, International-In- survival gear. Minimum kits are recommended for land, and 14 CFR Section 91.115, Right-of-Way summer and winter, and are required by law for flight Rules; Water Operations. The navigation rules of the into sparsely settled areas of Canada and Alaska. road are a set of collision avoidance rules as they Alaska State Department of Transportation and apply to aircraft on the water. A seaplane is Canadian Ministry of Transport officials can provide considered a vessel when on the water for the specific information on survival gear requirements. purposes of these collision avoidance rules. In The kit should be assembled in one container and be general, a seaplane on the water must keep well clear easily reachable and preferably floatable. 7-5-6 Potential Flight Hazards

Page 534 of the Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM.pdf)
AIM: Official Guide to Basic Flight Information and ATC Procedures

Index   533 -- Page 534 -- 535