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BoatSafe training and accreditation

Image of the BoatSafe logoIn Queensland, all candidates for a recreational boat licence or personal watercraft licence must satisfactorily complete either an approved BoatSafe competency-based training and assessment program or recognition of prior learning assessment with an approved BoatSafe training provider employed by a BoatSafe training organisation.

The BoatSafe scheme, modelled on national guidelines for the safe operation of recreational boats, is designed to increase the rigour of training and assessment processes improving the safety awareness, attitudes and competence of all future licence holders.

Find out:

What a BoatSafe course offers

The course covers theory and practical elements including the following units of competency:

  • preparing a recreational vessel for operation
  • applying international and state regulations relevant to the operation of a recreational vessel
  • assessing weather conditions and forecasts
  • operating mechanical and electrical appliances of a recreational vessel
  • manoeuvring a recreational vessel
  • applying safety management processes on a recreational vessel.

BoatSafe course duration

Training and practical assessment for a recreational marine driver licence is 6 hours minimum for a group of no more than 4 students. Additional time will be required to undertake and complete the written assessment. Refer to the BoatSafe RMDL Competency Standard and the BoatSafe PWCL Standard.

BoatSafe training providers can train more than 4 students in the one session by allocating more time and equipment to ensure quality outcomes in training and assessment.

Recognition of prior learning

The recognition of prior learning process is an alternative to completing the full BoatSafe course and caters for those who can provide evidence of other relevant qualifications, training or experience in operating a vessel. The BoatSafe training provider will determine if a student’s prior learning qualifies them for assessment either in part or full against the BoatSafe requirements.

If this relates to your situation, contact a BoatSafe training provider for consideration and assessment under the recognition of prior learning process.

Become a BoatSafe training organisation

Before applying make sure you qualify for approval under the Transport Operations (Marine Safety) Regulation 2016.

How to apply

To apply to become a BoatSafe training organisation you will need to:

Submit your application

By post

Mail your BoatSafe training organisation application, documents and application fee  and criminal history check receipts to:

Department of Transport and Main Roads
BoatSafe Administrator
PO Box 673
Fortitude Valley Qld 4006

By email

Submit an electronic copy of your BoatSafe training organisation application, documents and receipt for the criminal history check to

BoatSafe training provider nominations (including additions)

The BoatSafe training organisation must nominate 1 or more qualified BoatSafe training providers (F4076) for the department to endorse and provide relevant information about the nominated BoatSafe training provider shown in the BoatSafe Management Standard.

BoatSafe training providers who deliver personal watercraft training and assessment must have a personal watercraft licence in addition to their other qualifications and will need to be endorsed by the department for the delivery of this training and assessment.

Each nominated BoatSafe training provider must undergo a criminal history check to ensure they are a suitable person to deliver BoatSafe training and assessment.

Training facilities and equipment

An applicant for a BoatSafe training organisation authority must:

  • have access to a commercially certified vessel, appropriate for training for a RMDL or PWCL. The vessel must be capable of performing all of the operational requirements specified in the BoatSafe RMDL Competency standard and the BoatSafe PWCL Competency Standard with a minimum of 2 adults on-board
  • provide an area for the BoatSafe training provider to conduct the theory component of BoatSafe training
  • have resource requirements listed in the teaching and learning strategies contained in the BoatSafe RMDL Competency Standard and the BoatSafe PWCL Standard.

Alternative training delivery

The department will consider alternative training tools or on-line delivery, for BoatSafe RMDL Competency Standard including the BoatSafe PWCL Competency Standard. Such alternative tools or methods must be approved by the department prior to their use.

For more information refer to the BoatSafe Manual.

Renew your BoatSafe authority

The department will notify the BoatSafe training organisation approximately 2 months before their authority is due to expire. If a BoatSafe training organisation does not renew their authority by the expiry date, they cannot provide BoatSafe training and assessment.

How to renew

To renew your authority you must:

Read more information on renewing your authority in the BoatSafe Manual.

Submit your renewal application

By post

Department of Transport and Main Roads
BoatSafe Administrator
PO Box 673
Fortitude Valley Qld 4006

By email

Submit an electronic copy of your BoatSafe training organisation renewal documents and receipt for the criminal history check to

Cancel your training authority

To cancel your training authority you must post the following:

  • a signed letter of surrender of authority—including the date of surrender and address of the secure storage place for records of BoatSafe training and assessment
  • your BoatSafe Certificate of Authority
  • all unused BoatSafe Statement of Competency books and evidence of the request to remove all advertising.

You must keep learner’s training records for at least 3 years from the date the record was made. The training records must be kept in a safe and secure manner and must be accessible for inspection by the department or be able to be retrieved and presented within 5 working days if requested.

Mail your cancellation documents to:

Department of Transport and Main Roads
BoatSafe Administrator
PO Box 673
Fortitude Valley Qld 4006   

Changes to a BoatSafe training provider

A BoatSafe training organisation must immediately advise the department by email to if a BoatSafe training provider:

  • ceases to work for the particular BTO
  • is convicted of an indictable offence
  • has contravened marine safety legislation
  • is incapacitated and otherwise becomes incapable of providing BoatSafe training and assessment.


Payment of fees can only be made at a Maritime Safety Queensland office and a copy of the receipt must be forwarded with the application/nomination form to the BoatSafe Administrator.

Item  Cost as at 1 July 2017
Application to become a BoatSafe training organisation $510.05
Renewal for BoatSafe training organisation $510.05
Criminal history check $42.45

BoatSafe training provider fees

Payment of a criminal history checking fee for each BoatSafe training provider.

BoatSafe audit framework

A BoatSafe training organisation must always comply with the conditions of their authority. Compliance is measured by audits conducted by Marine Officers attached to Maritime Safety Queensland and the Department of Transport and Main Roads throughout the state. There are a number of audits that may be conducted throughout the currency of an authority. Refer to the BoatSafe Audit Framework for more information.

Scheme changes and updates

From 1 October 2014, BoatSafe training organisations will be informed about changes to the scheme via an information sheet.

To make this process as transparent as possible, the department will post information about changes and updates to the Information Sheet for scheme changes and updates (Information sheet 1) which will be available in this section of this page, from the first of each month.

This sheet will only be provided and updated on the first of each month, if any changes or updates have occurred during the previous month.

It is recommended that all BoatSafe training organisations check this information sheet monthly to keep abreast of changes and/or updates that have occurred or are due to occur within the BoatSafe scheme.

Sheet 1 - Information Sheet for scheme changes and updates

BoatSafe accreditation scheme review

The department has recently reviewed all road transport and industry-related accreditation schemes. The review of the BoatSafe accreditation scheme has now been completed and is attached below.

BoatSafe accreditation scheme review

Contact details

Contact us if you have any questions about getting BoatSafe training organisation accreditation.

Maritime Safety Queensland offices – for locations see the BoatSafe Manual or visit

 Post Department of Transport and Main Roads
BoatSafe Administrator
PO Box 673
Fortitude Valley Qld 4006
Last updated
06 December 2017