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About ABYC
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The American Boat & Yacht Council (ABYC) is a non-profit, member organization that develops voluntary global safety standards for the design, construction, maintenance, and repair of recreational boats.

ABYC also has a long-established commitment to providing technical education, training, certification and professional development. Our seminars, workshops and technician certification courses are instrumental in increasing the level of knowledge and professionalism throughout the boating industry.


Did you know that 90% of boats on the water are built to ABYC Standards?

Many people don’t realize that in the U.S. there are a few laws within the Code of Federal Regulations (CFRs) with regard to the construction of recreational boats. There are a few regulations for fire extinguishers, life jackets, navigation lights and visual distress signals but for the most part the government in the U.S. has left it up to private industry to create a body of guidance for building safe recreational boats. 

Responding to a mid-'50s boom in recreational boating, the American Boat & Yacht Council was formed by members of the Motorboat and Yacht Advisory Panel of the U.S. Coast Guard's Merchant Marine Council. It was incorporated on February 1, 1954, in New York State as a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) corporation.

ABYC is driven by a voluntary group of technical experts including boat builders, technicians, engineers, boat and accessory manufacturers, surveyors and investigators, retailers and dealers, yacht brokers and designers, marinas, law firms, government agencies, boat owners, insurance companies and more. As an independent consensus-based body, these industry experts work together to develop standards with the sole purpose of protecting the safety of the boating public.  

The Standards and Technical Information Reports for Small Craft covers all the major boat systems and the development and annual review of these standards provide boat building guidelines which correlate directly to the significant reduction in the number of boating accidents over the past six decades.

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