RC, The required items are life vests for all passengers, throw cushion or life ring, fire extinguisher(marine type), flares, and horn either as part of the boat or portable. I always carry a whistle attached to my life jacket in case of falling overboard. Hope that is what you were looking for, FSH
Don't forget that there is a new Coast Guard reg that states that all children under 13 years old wear a Coast Guard approved life jacket, that fits, when underway on a recreational vessel: unless they are in an enclosed cabin or below decks.
Don't forget that your flares have an expiration date. Expired flares equals a ticket. Besides that really old ones do not work when you need them to.
Oh and if your trailer has brakes it needs to be inspected.
There are boat ramps to launch at, that are much better than the end of my street, at the end of Tidemill Road (Turn North on Big Bethel Rd off of Victory Blvd Tidemill Rd is just after Tabb High School), At the end of Messick Rd. (Victory Blvd turns into Little Florida Rd which turns into Poquoson Ave. Turn left on Messick Rd., boat ramp near the end) Rens Rd (harder to find) at Bubba's Marina ($5) or next to the end of the boat house on the right (free but not as nice), End of Cedar Rd. (Turn Right off of Little Florida Rd, somebody who posts here fishes at this one from the shore.)
I use Tidemill Rd (actually called Smith Pt. landing) or Messick if I am launching close to home any where near low tide. The boat ramp at the end of my street has less than a foot of water at low tide out about 100 yards.
MUST have a radio on board. Though not on the list of required items, no radio mean you cannot hail for help, or get weather weather reports! A cell phone won't cut it - coverage is not uniform throughout the Bay with many dead spots.
A chart of the coastal area is a MUST have. Capt Segull makes some nice charts with wrecks and fishing areas marked. Nothing is more frustrating than to not know where a particular spot is, ie. Cabbage Patch, Latimer Shoals, 4A Lumps, etc. A chart will really help here. A chart will also give you rough bearings to the various points should you need to make a run for it due to weather.
if you have old flares dont throw them out carry them and of course at least the required amount of in date ones also. unless the flare has been soaking unopened in water for a while most old ones will light
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