RYA Powerboat Level 2

What is special about this course?

The aim iof this RYA Powerboat Level 2 course is provide a practical introduction to boat handling, seamanship and safety in powerboats.

Main elements covered are:-

  • Launching and recovery
  • Boat handling
  • Securing to a buoy
  • Anchoring
  • Leaving and coming alongside
  • Man overboard
  • Theory
  • Ropework
  • Distress signals and the Mayday call
  • Apply IRPCS – Collison Regulations
  • Coastal Pilotage and passage planning
  • Charts, chart symbols, buoyage systems

Entry requirements


To teach boat handling and seamanship in powerboats.:- 

  • Launching and recovery
    Use of a trailer or launching trolley.
    Consideration of launching and sea conditions, including hazards and obstructions.
    Number of persons required to launch/recover.
    Construction, width and condition of slipway.
    Steep/slippery slipways, beach launching, lee shores.
    Care of trailer bearings, hitch, lashings, ties, lights and winch.
    Trailer parking.
    Prepare the boat, lines, fenders, safety equipment, fuel tanks, lines and secure gear on board.
  • Boat handling
    Loading: effect on handling and performance, effect on balance and trim, CE Plate and manufacturer's recommendation
    Displacement boats: handling ahead and astern, carrying way
    Crew members: minimum number in high speed craft, keeping a look-out
    Awareness of other water users, including effect of wash
    Steering, controls, effect of current or tidal stream
    High speed manoeuvring: planing, trim tabs and power trim
    Planing boats: propeller angle and immersion, shallow drive, high/low speed handling, tiller/console steering
    Carry out pre-start checks, engine starting and stopping
    Demonstrate the use of an appropriate length kill cord at all times
    Carry out low speed manoeuvres including: turning in a confined area, effect of wind on bow and holding off. Demonstrate an awareness of the danger of flooding when going astern
    Carry out high speed manoeuvres including S-turns and U-turns
  • Securing to a buoy
    Preparation of mooring warp
    Use of a boat hook
    Method of approach
    Crew communication
    Making fast
    Procedure when overshooting
    Approach and secure to buoy
  • Anchoring
    Method of approach in various conditions
    Taking way off
    Crew communication
    Check holding
    Depth of water, holding ground, scope required
    Types of anchor
    Stowage and attachment to boat
    Preparation of anchor, chain and warp
    Weighing anchor
    Approach and anchor correctly
    Weigh anchor correctly


  • Leaving and coming alongside
    Preparation and use of painter, lines and fenders, attachement to boat, stowage under way
    Speed and angle of approach
    Wind effect
    Method of approach in tidal stream or current
    Make fast alongside
    Use springs
    Leave - ahead or astern
  • Man overboard
    Recovery or man overboard
    Take immediate action
    Observe the man overboard
    Carry out the correct return with awareness of propeller
    Approach and recover the man in the water
  • Theory
    Types of craft: advantages and disadvantages of different hull forms with respect to sea keeping ability
    Engines and drives: advantages and disadvantages of outboard, inboard and outdrive units, single and twin screws, choice and use of fuels
    Siting of fuel tanks, fuel lines, batteries, wiring, fire extinguishers
    Routine engine maintenance checks, basic fault diagnosis
    Close down procedure
    Advice to inland drivers about coastal waters
    Use and limitations of GPS
    Application of local byelaws, especially around commercial shipping
    Sources of weather information
    Awareness of other water users
    Communication with other craft - hand and sound signals
    Disabled craft
    Emergency action, preventing sinking
    Adrift - alternative means or propulsion
    Towing and being towed
    Fire precautions and fire fighting
  • Ropework
    Distress signals and the Mayday call
    Apply IRPCS, principally rules 5,7,8,9,12-19

Pilotage and passage planning
CG66 Small Craft Safety Scheme
Charts, chart symbols, buoyage systems
Tides and tidal streams
Use steering and hand bearing compasses
Apply Section A on coastal waters

How will I study my course?

  • Part Time

How long will my course last?

2 Days

Our RYA Powerboat Level 2 course offers a very practical and thorough introduction to powerboating.

Where can I study my course?

    • Dunoon Learning Centre
    • Lochgilphead Learning Centre
    • Oban Learning Centre

Start date

The courses run at various times throughout the year. Check Argyll College website and local centres for details


For the latest information on fees please see our fees policy.

What can I do on completion of my course?

Maritime Skills employment in the leisure boat industry, marinas and boatyards, or as progression towards knowledge and qualifications for entry into further maritime skills courses or Merchant Navy type training.

Is there more information available online?

QR Code - scan to visit course page

You can use the above QR code to connect directly to the course details.

To enrol, or for further information on this course, please contact your local Argyll College Centre or apply online at https://www.argyll.uhi.ac.uk/courses/

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at Argyll College UHI. Argyll College operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of age, disability, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity status, race, religion and/or belief, sex, sexual orientation or socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.

Search again