Sheriff Boat Patrol
The Lewis County Sheriff's Office marine patrol unit and education program was created in the early 1980's in response to the increasing amount of recreational boaters. As recreational boating increased, so did the responsibilities of the marine unit. Today our primary responsibilities are education and enforcement. The Sheriff's Office has two lake vessels, a 20 foot Almar, and a 16 foot Hewescraft. We have two primary inland lakes that we patrol: Lake Mayfield (2,250 sq. acres) and Riffe Lake (11,830 sq. acres). There are several other bodies of water including Mineral Lake, Lake Scanewea, and the Chehalis and Cowlitz Rivers. The Boating Enforcement officers are trained and certified by the Washington State Parks Department. On average every weekend throughout the summer, both vessels will be out patrolling the lakes in Lewis County. The Sheriff's Office does voluntary inspections at the ramps at each of the lakes. During this inspection Deputies look for the required safety equipment on board the vessels. This inspection is intended as public education. If a vessel has been inspected and passed, a inspection sticker will be provided to the operator to be placed on the vessel's windshield. This sticker identifies that the vessel has been inspected for the year. Since 1996, the marine unit has conducted over 4000 written safety inspections, over 3700 visual inspections, and investigated 28 boating accidents.
The Lewis County Sheriff's Office is committed to water safety education throughout our county. We work closely with Washington State Parks to ensure Lewis County is a safe place to enjoy outdoor recreation.
The Boating Patrol Program is supervised by Detective Sergeant Kevin Engelbertson. If you have any questions about required equipment, please contact the Lewis County Sheriff's Office at 360-748-9286, and ask to talk to one of the boating enforcement officers.
Visit BoatWashington.org for more boating safety information and resources.