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Watercraft Patrol and Survival Tactics

NCJ Number
D M Turner; T Lesce
Date Published
288 pages
Police procedures and protection of constitutional liberties are the same for both land and water officers, but techniques of application vary greatly.
Threats faced by watercraft patrol officers can be personal or impersonal and intentional or inadvertent. Often, these officers encounter wildlife law violators who are armed, but not hardened felons. Officer handling of the situation will determine whether it escalates into a violent encounter. Very commonly, officers find disorderly persons on the water. Some are simply recreational boaters violating speed or safety regulations, while others are public hazards, such as boaters creating large wakes in a no-wake zone. Many boaters are under the influence of some sort of intoxicant, and officers must recognize this and take special measures to ensure their safety and that of the public. Watercraft patrol and survival tactics are delineated that focus on watercraft enforcement, patrol efforts, search and rescue, watercraft patrol equipment use, and watercraft patrol officer training. A discussion on watercraft officer survival covers one- and two-officer patrols, shoreline contacts, campgrounds and large groups, water stops, inspections, stolen boats, arrests, accident responses, night operations, booby traps, environmental survival, towing watercraft, and assaults on the water. 21 notes and 55 figures


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