Safety is important when purchasing an inflatable kayak. You have a number of inflatable kayaks to choose from. Top manufacturers like Sevylor, Sea Eagle, Intex, and more have an incredible variety of kayaks that range in cost, size, style, materials used and other areas.
It can be a bit overwhelming to find the right kayak or inflatable canoe for your needs that will be durable and safe. One thing to consider when making a decision is if the boat you are buying is NMMA certified. This post will help you to understand what NMMA certification is all about.
NMMA Certification Basics
NMMA certification is basically an expanded, more comprehensive version of the guidelines set by the U.S. Coast Guard for all boats sold in the U.S. geared to ensuring consumer safety. The U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) requirements are fine, but NMMA simply covers more ground in terms of the fuel system, ventilation, horsepower aptitude, passenger and weight aptitude, the electrical system, the navigation lights, warning label placement and guidelines, the steering system, and more.
A third party inspector checks the boat to ensure it meets the guidelines set by the USCG and ABYC (who established the guidelines for NMMA certification). It demands a little more from the boat manufacturer, but the end result is a boat that you can be certain is both safe and functional. Personally, “safe and functional” sit near the top of my requirements in an inflatable kayak or canoe!!!
NMMA Certification And Inflatable Kayaks
Some of the aspects of NMMA certification apply to kayaks, while others will not. The kayak’s capacity for horsepower, maximum weight, and number of persons are all things that a third party would look at when inspecting a kayak for NMMA certification.
Looking for a kayak that has NMMA certification is pretty simple. You’ll be able to find the NMMA certification logo on the yacht plate or capacity. This will be located near the helm plate. You can also check with the dealer if you fail to find it.
Whether or not your kayak is NMMA certified isn’t going to keep you from getting a kayak. It’s just something that is really in the best interests of you, and whoever else might use the kayak, to have when you go to purchase your kayak.
The combined standards of the USCG and ABYC result in a kayak that’s not only safe to use, but is also going to be able to perform according to its specifications.