Visit Select Locations to Participate

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Department of Boating and Waterways (DBW), Radio Disney and UC Davis Children’s Hospital announce the 12th Annual Life Jacket Trade-In. The event will take place May 27 from 4-6 p.m. at select Kohl’s Department Store locations in Sacramento, and from 1-3 p.m. at Sam’s Club locations in the Bay Area and Los Angeles.

“Life jacket use is especially important this summer due to this year’s abundant snowfall and spring snowmelt, which will result in high cold water levels in rivers and lakes”, stated DBW’s Acting Director Lucia Becerra. “Properly fitted life jackets significantly increase the chances of surviving a boating accident”.

Water enthusiasts are invited to bring their life jackets for inspection by water safety professionals. If a life jacket is found to be outgrown or unserviceable, a new, properly fitted U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket will be given in exchange. Life jackets will be available at each site while supplies last.

As part of the life jacket focus, water safety officials will showcase new inflatable model life jackets. Too many boaters still think of life jackets in out-dated terms, as bright orange, bulky and uncomfortable, which is no longer the case. The new belt pack and over the shoulder model inflatable life jackets allow the needed mobility and flexibility for activities like boating, fishing, paddling, hunting, sunbathing, and are much cooler in warmer weather.

This event is being conducted in connection with National Safe Boating Week (May 21-27) which aims to spread the message about life jacket wear and safe boating practices.

Community partners include Sacramento Safe Kids Coalition, Radio Disney, CBS Radio, Consumnes Fire Department, Drowning Accident Rescue Team, U.S. Power Squadrons and the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary.

California boating law requires all children under the age of 13, every person on board a personal watercraft (jet skis) or being towed behind a vessel to wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket. For more information, please visit

DBW enhances public access to California's waterways and promotes boating and aquatic safety through programs funded by vessel registration fees, boating fuel tax dollars and boating facility construction loan payments