The age a person must be to legally operate a jet ski varies. Every state in America establishes its own set of rules and regulations regarding this topic.
For example, in Washington, a person must be at least 12 years old to legally operate a jet ski. In the state of New Jersey, that age is 16. In Ohio, children under the age of 12 are never permitted to drive a jet ski; however, children between the ages of 12 and 15 can legally operate a jet ski with a passenger who is 18 or above. Children age 16 and over can legally operate a jet ski on their own in Ohio.