Marine Patrol

Sheriff's Marine PatrolKittitas County has maintained an approved Boating Safety Program for over 40 years using well trained and equipped line deputies. Each year we strive to educate people on water related recreation. We cover boating safety, swimming safety and the laws relating to ecology and human impact. We balance our time between education, rescue and enforcement on the water with the other law enforcement and emergency management responsibilities.

We have established partnerships with our local fire services to expand water rescue by creating technical rope rescue teams and shoreline support teams which have reduced response times and increased rescuer safety. This allows us to address the demands on such a large and diverse waterway system where we see weekend population increases in the thousands. We have also partnered with our local Fish & Wildlife Officers to address the increased impacts on our aquatic marine life.

On major holidays, we provide a multi-agency enforcement presence on the water with the Grant County Sheriff's office and the Coast Guard where we strictly enforce those laws relating to safety, such as negligent operation, boating under the Influence and not having the required safety equipment such as ski flags and life jackets.

NOTE: An approved Lifejacket is required for all persons on board any vessel designed to transport persons on the water and children under the age of 12 are required to have the life jacket on. This includes all boats and rafts with rowing frames or motors, or pontoon boats and canoes.

The Sheriff's Office currently has 15 deputies who are cross-trained as Marine Patrol Officers and Boat Operators. Eight of these Deputies are also cross trained in Swift-Water Rescue. They specialize in responding to all of the incidents involving our moving water such as rafters caught in log jams, spillways and siphons.

We have four Deputies trained In Public Safety Diving. They are called upon to recover the bodies of drowning victims, investigate water related deaths and to recover vehicles, stolen property and other items beneath the surface.

The Sheriff's Office has 4 boats, specifically designed to meet the demands of the water classification and intended service. We have a 20 foot class I patrol boat used for Patrol and Rescue on the Columbia River and the larger lakes in the upper county. We have an 18 foot rescue jet boat used for patrol and rescue on the small lakes and rivers. It is also used to support diving operations. We have an 18 foot flat bottom jet sled with an outboard jet used primarily on the Yakima River for rescues.

We also have a 12 foot inflatable jet boat which is staged in the upper county. This boat is used for rescue on the smaller lakes, ponds and sections of river in the upper county where the larger boat cannot operate.

The Sheriff's Office Marine Patrol Unit is available to conduct pre-season vessel inspections, equipment safety inspections and to provide classes on boating safety.

Call 509-925-8534 and ask to speak to a Marine Patrol Officer.

Reminder - Mandatory Boater Education cards are a requirement.

Washington State Parks Boating Program