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altCanadian Power and Sail Squadrons (CPS) has announced the introduction of a fully on-line self-study version of the Boating Basics course. Formerly called Boat-Pro if taught in classroom, this course prepares candidates to write an exam qualifying them for the Pleasure Craft Operator’s Card (PCOC). This certificate is mandated by Transport Canada and is the minimum certification needed to operate any powered vessel of any length in Canadian waters.

Candidates who complete the Boating basics course are allowed to write the on-line examination that leads to the PCOC certification. This exam has been expanded in recent years to cover more detail about the safe operation of motored vessels.

The Boating Basics course will continue to be offered by Power Squadrons from coast-to-coast as a part of the longer Boating Course, which covers additional topics including basic navigation and seamanship and is usually offered over 14 sessions in classroom settings.

Those who complete the Boating Basics Course and are successful in the PCOC exam are offered membership in Canadian Power Squadrons, the largest volunteer organization focused on marine safety and training in North America. www.cpsboat.ca.