What In The World Is The Life Jacket Loaner Program?

Life jacket Loaner Program
Courtesy: Boat Owners Association of The United States

If you have never heard of this Program, you are in good company.

It is a BoatUS Foundation for Boating Safety & Clean Water-sponsored program which began in 1998.

Ok. So why would anyone ever need a life vest loaner?

Well.., as Ronnie used to say, if you own your own boat and have children, you have probably encountered the following scenario or one like it.

Your 6 year old daughter has invited a friend to spend the weekend with her and to join you and your family on a little boat outing.

The only problem is that your spare life vests are either adult size or life vests that the kids have outgrown. You have nothing that will fit the friend.

Your daughter, being the good and generous kid that she is, offers to let her friend use her life vest and she won’t wear one.

After all, she has been swimming since almost before she could walk.

Life Jacket Loaner Program
Photo: Boat Owners Association
of The United States

So reluctantly, you agree to this.

However, not only is this an unsafe boating practice, but in Arizona and Utah it is against the law which states:

All children 12 years of age and younger must wear a U.S. Coast Guard—approved Type I, II, or III life jacket (PFD) while underway on any vessel.

Fortunately, if you are ever faced with this situation and if you boat at Lake Powell, there is no problem.

Aramark at Wahweap Marina and the Park Ranger’s Station at Hall’s Crossing are both participants in this Loaner Program, sponsored by the BoatUS Foundation for Boating Safety & Clean Water.

The BoatUS Foundation is a national 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting safe and environmentally sensitive boating.

In 1998, the Foundation “began distributing kits to sites across the nation...The kits consisted of 12 child-sized life jackets, as well as signs, brochures and a sign-out binder.”

The life vests come in a range of sizes: Infant, Child and Youth; something to fit most children.

How the Program Works:

In our scenario above, you take your daughter’s friend to either Aramark at Wahweap Marina or the Park Ranger’s Station at Hall’s Crossing.

You will then provide the staff there with your name, address, phone number, driver’s license number and anticipated return date.

Your daughter’s friend will be fitted for a life vest, and as easy as that, you are on your way.

Life Jacket Loaner Program
Photo: Boat Owners Association
of The United States

At the end of your boating trip, you simply return the vest to the location where you got it.

There is no charge for the use of the vest.

If you would like to learn more about the program, copy & paste:


If you would like to participate in the program and become a loaner site, copy & paste:


If you would like to watch a video about the program, how to properly fit your child with a life vest, to find a loaner site or how to make a donation to the program, copy & paste:


“Help Make Boating Safer for children. The Life Jacket Loaner Program for Kids lends jackets out more than 90,000 times a year and supplies are running short.

Your contribution of any amount, even just $10, will make a difference to a small child.

Consider making a fully tax-deductible donation today to keep our program afloat.”

Ruth Wood
Past President (retired 2011)
BoatUS Foundation

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References and Resources:

Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatU.S.)
880 South Pickett St.
Alexandria, VA 22304
800-245-BOAT (2628)

Halls Crossing Ranger Station,
Highway 276
Halls Crossing, UT, 84533
Directions to this Life Vest Loaner location.
GPS: (37.4109,-110.4283)

Contact Info:
Steve Luckensen
Phone: 435-684-7410
Email: steve_luckesen@nps.gov

Wahweap Marina (ARAMARK)
100 Lakeshore Drive
Page, AZ, 86040
Directions to this Life Jacket Loaner location.
GPS: (36.9147,-111.4558)

Contact Info:
Chantel Smith
Phone: 928-645-1027
Email: smith-chantel@aramark.com

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