Supervisors, county CAO get firsthand look at the department’s newest equipment
The Colusa County Sheriff’s Office will be patrolling East Park Reservoir and the Sacramento River in style this summer in an $80,000 boat, funded through a Department of Boating and Waterways grant.
Last Wednesday, a handful of county officials joined the Sheriff’s Office’s current boating officer Kane Lausten, along with former boating officers Kristopher Cooper and Michael Bradwell, for the watercraft’s maiden voyage. Among the county officials were supervisors Kent Boes and John Loudon, County CAO Wendy Tyler, and Angela Gross, a county purchasing technician.
The new boat replaces a recently retired vessel that had been in service since 1999.
“We definitely needed this,” Bradwell said.
While the design of the new boat is slightly different than the one being retired – it features a central drivers’ station, rather than a right-hand design –it features the same mechanics, same Hamilton pump, same steering, and same Morris controls.
“What’s nice about this boat is basically just a stem off of the other boat that we have. Just a newer version… When this boat came, we didn’t really have to retrain any of us. It’s jump on and go,” Bradwell said.
The craft is outfitted with side-scanning sonar, thermal imaging, and remote-controlled spotlights, and a Ford Raptor engine under the hood. The boat itself was designed to navigate the Rogue River in Oregon, which is much more treacherous than the Sacramento River, Cooper said. The sides of the boat are composed of a rubber-like buoyant material that is also filled with about 30 percent air, rendering the craft “virtually unsinkable.”
“These boats are pretty much indestructible… They’ll take a lot,” Bradwell said.
The new boat will split time between patrolling the Sacramento River and East Park Reservoir. ■