One of the basic rules of flying over water is that you need some kind of raft if you're out of power-off glide range from land. Does that also apply to seaplanes or amphibious planes?

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    $\begingroup$ Are you asking a pure regulation question, as in you are required to, or what is considered more general good sense? $\endgroup$
    – GdD
    Oct 1, 2020 at 8:38
  • $\begingroup$ @GdD This is a pure regulation question. Good sense would obviously say to take a raft, even if you're not required to. 😇 $\endgroup$ Oct 1, 2020 at 14:07

1 Answer 1


Here is an answer I found after a few minutes of looking up regulations online.

Federal Aviation regulations require carriage of FAA approved floatation gear when operating under Part 91 for hire (FAR 91.205(b)(12)), but Part 91 flights not conducted for hire are not required by the FAA to carry floatation equipment. It is worth noting that local authorities, including state, county and municipal authorities, may require that all vessels, including seaplanes, carry U.S. Coast Guard approved floatation gear on board.

Found on the https://www.seaplanepilotsassociation.org/resources/faq/operations/ website.

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    $\begingroup$ 'floatation gear' in this case could just mean Personal Floatation Devices (i.e. life jackets). is there something else that specifies that it's a raft? $\endgroup$ Oct 1, 2020 at 11:00
  • $\begingroup$ "Flotation gear" - you mean those gigantic pontoons bolted to the bottom of my plane? NOTE: according to Merriam-Webster, there's only one a in flotation, but floatation is a less common, but still correct spelling. Who knew? Why? Who cares? $\endgroup$
    – FreeMan
    Oct 1, 2020 at 11:15

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