New Coast Guard App Streamlines Boating Safety to Maximize Summer Fun

Jun 4, 2015

DHS US Coast Guard Android app main menu
Just in time for the summer season, the U.S. Coast Guard launched a brand new app to give smartphone users easy, on-demand access to critical boating safety information and resources.

With this new app, called United States Coast Guard, users can ensure they have proper equipment, check the weather, file a float plan, and so much more.

The app also features an emergency assistance button, which calls the closest Coast Guard command center if the phone’s location services are enabled.

Don’t miss the Coast Guard’s Facebook video about the app for details.

This app lets users:

  • Identify boating safety laws, requirements and resources available in each state.
  • Request a vessel safety check from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary.
  • Determine required safety equipment (by law) based on vessel size and type. The app also recommends additional safety equipment.
  • File a float plan with up to three friends, loved ones or other responsible parties. (Users cannot file a float plan directly with the Coast Guard, but the app helps develop a float plan that will allow responsible parties to provide search and rescue coordinators with important information to facilitate a missing or overdue boater case.)
  • DHS US Coast Guard Android app Rules of the Road menu
    Review the most commonly sought out navigational “rules of the road.”
  • Access weather information from the closest NOAA buoy to your current location.
  • Report a navigational hazard to the Coast Guard, such as a buoy or marker out of place, a sunken vessel or some other obstacle obstructing safe passage of a federal waterway.
  • Report pollution to the Coast Guard
  • Report suspicious activity to the Coast Guard

The app is available on Google Play for Android devices, and Apple’s App Store for iOS devices.

On a privacy note: personal information stored on the phone through this app is not sent to the Coast Guard, unless the user chooses to send it. The Coast Guard does not track a user’s location, and the app does not track a user’s location unless the app is being used. Users can easily turn their location on or off within the app’s settings button.

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DHS US Coast Guard Android app Report Suspicious Activity with location turned off.
DHS US Coast Guard Android app main Emergency Assistance page with location turned on.

Important note: The U.S. Coast Guard app is mainly designed to provide additional boating safety resources for mobile device users. It is not a replacement for a VHF-FM marine radio, Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB), safe boating classes and best judgment. Learn more about being a responsible boater at the official website of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Boating Safety Division.

You can download this app and other cool mobile government apps with just a few clicks from our Federal Mobile Apps Directory. Federal agencies can get their apps in the directory by using the Federal Mobile Products Registry.