Life jacket rules are a common discussion point amongst boaties. They are a vital piece of safety equipment that can save your life. The best idea is to make sure you wear it. Put the lifejacket on as part of your pre-trip preparation. It is a lot harder to put a lifejacket on in the water during an emergency!
Did you know that it is compulsory to wear a lifejacket: when crossing a designated coastal bar (http://www.msq.qld.gov.au/Safety/Crossing-a-bar) in an open boat that is less than 4.8m in length if you are under 12 years old (from 12 months old and up to, but not including, 12 years old) in an open boat that is less than 4.8m in length and underway.
Legislation also requires that: boat owners or skippers must give each person on board information about where safety equipment is kept and clearly sign where lifejackets are stowed. The labels must have the word ‘lifejacket’ in red text on a white background or white text on a red background
Lifejackets must comply and display information about which Australian Standard (AS) applies. The lifejacket must comply with this standard. The current standard is AS 4758, which has replaced AS 1512-1996, AS 1499-1996 and AS 2260-1996. Lifejackets that meet these previous standards are still acceptable to use if they are in good condition.
Maritime Safety Queensland have published information concerning general safety obligations and life jackets which can be found here; http://www.msq.qld.gov.au/Safety/Life-jackets