Dive Flag Awareness
SCUBA, skin-diving and snorkeling are all common activities in Rhode Island waters. When participating in any of these activities participants must display a flag warning boaters of their presence under water. Divers and boaters are required to follow the regulations below to ensure a safe and fun time above and below the water.
- Boaters must maintain a safe distance of 50 feet from a dive flag, unless the dive flag is in a place that obstructs navigation
- A warning flag shall be placed on a buoy at a place of the diver’s submergence. The flag shall be red in color and at least twelve by twelve inches (12” x 12”) with a white stripe running from the diagonal corners and the stripe one quarter (1/4) as wide as the flag.
- If not placed on a buoy, a warning flag shall be conspicuously flown upon a vessel which the diver is then using in the area. This flag shall meet the description above, however, it shall be at least eighteen by eighteen inches (18”x 18”).
- The flag must only be flown during diving activity and should be taken down during transit
- No person shall use a dive flag in an area that obstructs navigation
- Divers should ascend slowly and cautiously, ensuring that they are within the 50 foot safety zone around the flag