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With over 25,000 miles of navigable inland
waterways in the United States, it should come as
no surprise that police departments maintain marine
patrol units.  That number doesn't even include the
thousands of miles of Atlantic, Pacific, and Gulf
coastlines that affect the police activities of coastal
police jurisdictions.  Prior to 9-11, police marine
units were tasked with obvious activities like
enforcing boating rules and regulations and
conducting emergency water rescues.  
9-11 has changed the picture for police marine
patrols and probably for the better.  Aside from
drug smugglers, the vast majority of criminals with
whom police normally interact rarely use waterways
as their preferred mode of transportation.  In the
past, a police department, responsible for a
significant body of water, maintained a marine unit
more for an emergency response capability rather
than viewing it as a significant contribution to its
patrol activities.

The real threat of terrorism has exposed a very
large, and relatively un-patrolled, area of travel and
access to those who might desire to smuggle more
than drugs such as guns, bombs, and the people
willing to utilize them.

While the United States Coast Guard is, and will
continue to be, the premier defender of America's
coastlines and waterways, the need for more police
involvement in patrolling waterways should be
obvious. When one considers the growth in
population, the thousands of miles of shoreline, the
vast increase in commercial and recreational water
traffic, and the threat of terrorism, it should be
obvious to anyone that more marine patrol is the
only responsible course of action.

Assignment to a police marine unit is just like
assignment to any other specialized unit.  You
won't be able to begin your career there.  You'll
have to put the required amount of time in patrol,
before you can apply for transfer to your marine
unit.  Don't forget to make those all important
personal connections with members of the unit.  
Without those connections, your chances of getting
the assignment will remain mostly a figment of your
own imagination.
If you think that an assignment to a police marine
unit would be a relatively easy and carefree
assignment, you're wrong.  It's still police work with
a few more demanding and dangerous aspects
added.  While I think police boats are really cool, I
wouldn't want to be assigned to one.  When I get
into a bad situation, I prefer to have solid ground
beneath me, but that's just me.
United States Coast Guard (USCG)

Read about the Coast Guard District
where you
live
The United States Coast Guard (USCG) is a military
branch of the United States involved in maritime
law, mariner assistance, and search and rescue,
among other duties of coast guards elsewhere. One
of the seven uniformed services of the United
States, and the smallest armed service of the
United States, its stated mission is to protect the
public, the environment, and the United States
economic and security interests in any maritime
region in which those interests may be at risk,
including international waters and America's coasts,
ports, and inland waterways.

USCG has a broad and important role in homeland
security, law enforcement, search and rescue,
marine environmental pollution response, and the
maintenance of river, intracoastal and offshore aids
to navigation (ATON). It also lays claim to being the
United States' oldest continuous seagoing service.
The United States Coast Guard has about 40,150
men and women on active duty.
Tampa Police Marine Unit - The Marine Unit is
made up of five boats and two personal watercraft.
The "flagship of the fleet" is a 32 foot Donzi ZF
boasting twin outboard engines providing 500
horsepower for quick response and interdiction
tasks. The Donzi is the cutting edge of marine law
enforcement with a gyro-stabilized camera system
that is designed for the marine environment. The
camera has a triple sensor (day/night/infra-red)
system with broadcast quality. This system is
capable of real time down link broadcast to all
district systems, the mobile command post and a
mobile response vehicle. The remainder of the fleet
consists of a 26-foot Boston Whaler, a 28-foot
Goldline, a 19-foot rigid hull inflatable and a 21-foot
Carolina Skiff.
New Jersey State Police - Marine Services
Bureau - The Marine Services Bureau provides a
full-time law enforcement service for all of New
Jersey's waterways and is the primary provider for
all police services on the water and contiguous land
areas of the State of New Jersey. The mission of
the Marine Services Bureau is to protect and serve
the boating community and to preserve the natural
resources of this state by utilizing general law
enforcement concepts, training and education, and
enforcing all laws fairly and without bias. We shall
also provide a preventive level of homeland security
through intelligent, vigilant, and highly visible patrol
measures.
Police Marine
Patrol
"Assignment to a police marine unit is just like
assignment to any other specialized unit.  You
won't be able to begin your career there."
~ Barry M. Baker

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