Marine 6 Makes Indian River County's waters Safer

08/16/2017
Marine 6 is the Indian River County’s Sheriff’s Office all volunteer Marine Unit operating a 24’
patrol boat on the waters of the county with a crew of 12 highly experienced boat operators
and observers 52 weeks per year. Many of the operators have advanced US Coast Guard
licenses and are retired Commissioned and NCO military personnel.
 
Our job is to provide a visible presence of the Indian River County Sheriff’s Office while
patrolling the Indian River Lagoon waterways, harbors and developed waterfront residential
areas; To assist the boating public in identifying speed restricted zones such as areas of
Manatee population; And to inform the boating public of the laws governing safety such as the
use of life saving devices particularly as they apply to children as well as overloading and proper
seating. Our mere presence seems to instill the need for safer operation.
 
A typical patrol will last for 4-5 hours with both an operator and an observer aboard. A shift will
consist of patrolling of waterfront areas, safety advisories when appropriate for yachts, small
boats, jet skis, kayaks and paddle board operators. We are in constant contact with the Sheriff’s
dispatch and are able to respond to most any area within county waters in less than 30
minutes.
 
Marine 6 is an essential resource to supplement the Sheriff’s overall mission for marine
enforcement activities. We have saved taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars with this all
volunteer operation over the years. We have saved lives through water rescues and by
educating the public on boating safety. We continue to assist in preventing crime on the
waterways by our presence. The Indian River County Sheriff’s Office Volunteer motto is, “We
serve because we care.”
 
Tad Woodhull - Indian River County Sheriff’s Office Community Service Unit (CSU) Marine Patrol
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