A DAY WITH THE MARINE POLICE
Number # 12, the newest boot in the Police Marine fleet is docked
at the marina at Wantagh County Park.
Sergeant William Morrison of the Nassau County
Police Department pushed hard on the siren button
while Patrolman Edward J. Konen told The Observer,
" This is one that really deserves a summons."
We were not in a police car, but in a Nassau
County Marine Police boat on Saturday when
Sergeant Morrison went at top speed with his
269 horsepower engine in hot pursuit of the driver
of a boat towing a water skier. This took place
in the State Channel in the Great South Bay, near
We were on board Police Boat # 12, a 25'
He said that actually this of- ;
fender was ' mild'. He has gotten
some ' jokers' who have been down
right violent. Some boatmen show
great resentment when the police
give them warnings - even regarding
their own safety. There
have been some cases, Patrolman
to fire his pistol ( the marine
police do not war arms; they keep
them in a canvass bag in the bag
in the bunk area to minimize
salt water corrosion). He had to
fire three shots in the air to stop
two boat owners from fighting
with each other.
The police boat also caught up
with a speeding offender who was
speeding in a four mile area,
because it was a marked channel
where boats are forebidden to
cause ' waves'. ' Waves can create
accidents or damage to other
boats. Coffee pots can fall off
alcohol stoves; more seriously,
people have been known to break
legs by being suddenly thrown.
The patrolman wrote out the
speeding summons and the offender
must respond by going to
the Second District Court in
Wantagh. The fine could range
from $ 10 to $ 50., depending upon
the judge and the number of offenses.
Warning boaters to stay out of the Channel when they are in the path
of the barge loaded with tons of sand.
Police Warn Boaters of Barge
Another official duty that Police
Marine Boat # 12 performed
last Saturday was to travel up
andd down an area of the channel
near Wantagh clearing it of
all boats so that the barge that
was digging a deeper channel
could go through. The policeman
explained that the barge was so
heavy with sand that it could not
easily stop and would plow right
over the boats, which were
anchored for sihing in the channel.
( The land on which the beautiful
new Nassau County park and
marina, the Wantagh Park, was
built, used to be a marsh and
was filled in with sand dug from
the channel. Recent dredging is
being done for fill for the new
Sewerage Disposal plant in
In other police action, performed
while we were on board,
Police Marine Boat # 12, scooted
around the Zach's Bay area at
Jones Beach, warning anchored
boats that they were moored in
an illegal zone, too close to the
bathers in Zachs Bay. The police
explained that anchorage near
a bathing area was prohibited
because the flushing of ' heads'
could pollute the waters. An attractive
female boating enthusiast,
dressed as if she were
getting ready to attend a garden
party, with her floopy hat and
a mod culotte dress, emerged
from her cabin and was told that
her boat would have to take up
anchor and move to another area.
She began frantically shouting for
her husband, who was sunbathing
while her children were playing
in an unprotected beach area,
to which they ' inked in'.
One night, the police had to disperse
17 boats that were ' rafted
together and having a party. The
complaint charged that they were
' disturbing the peace'. The police
say that some of these cocktail
parties get quite wild.
Number # 12 boat last month
By Caroline Bunting Klesh
AlGlass by Pacemaker, the most recent boat
added to the fleet, which police the waters of the
Great South Bay from Rockaway to Amityville.
Soon they had the offender lined- up alongside.
They threw out a line and tied the offender's boat
to the police boat. After asking for the pilot's
boat registration card, the patrolman went below
deck to the desk, to do the paper work.
Since the recent death of a 15- year- old Massapequa
boy, the police have been cracking down on
water skiiers who are not complying with the law.
A few hours later, two boats towing two other
water skiers were issued summonses at one time.
The pilot and owner of one boat was a 20- year- old
from East Meadow who accepted the summons
graciously. The other 20- year- old from Wantagh
was quite nasty. He stood in his boat and argued
with the officer who was attempting to hand him
" Just where do you find any warning about no
skiing in the channel? Tell me. I saw nothing
posted. Why in the h. . . don't you have the ordinances
of the Town displayed on poles?" He finally
accepted the summons ( he couldn't do otherwise
because his registration card was paper- clipped
to the summons) and then speeded off in a non-spped
four mile an hour zone.
Patrolmen Konen said that if he had torn up the
summons and thrown it in the water, he would
have gotten out the handcuffs and taken him off
to court for an arraignment.
Police Know Waters
None of the police boats are
equipped with depth meters; the
marine police told us that they
were their own ' depth meters',
because they have become so familiar
with the waters. The know
every shoal of the inticate network
of waterways and canals
on the South Shore. Some of the
waters are dangerously shallow,
while many of the channels are
TOB Needs New Buoys
The police told us that more
and better markers are needed
by the Town of Oyster Bay.
Some pilings which were installed
were not strong enough and freezing
temperature have made them
useless. They said mat the
Town of Hempstead markers are
much better. The police pointed
out mat markers are needed in
the areas of the Massapequa
Cove, West Island, Winnie Hook
and along Nassau Shores. " The
pilings are too light," they said.
Seaford.) ^^^^- r
This heavy specialised equipment is being used to dredge the channel
conducted 26 searchs for stolen
stripped down boats. The Marine
Police are usually successful
in finding them. Aboard they also
carry a list of contraband stolen
articles; many of which they recoup.
Last year, the marine police
in Nassau County issued 619
summonses, most on the South
Shore. This year, they are sure
that the figure will exceed 1,000.
Some of their night work includes
secreting themselves in
unmarked boats in marinas waiting
to catch burglars or pyro-maniacs.
Responsible for Conservation
The police are responsible for
conservation as well as law enforcement.
They watch duck hunters,
clam diggers, and prevent
shell fishing in polluted areas.,
The police say that they have no
trouble with the many dogs that
ride in boats. They also are particularly
friendly with children
and teeanagers, whom they hope
will grow up to have respect for
for a two- fold purpose.; to make
Sergeant William Morrison of the
Nassau County Mdrine Police.
Patrol North Shore Too
In all, the Nassau County Police
maintain 15 boats ranging
from a 17' to 38* on the South
Shore and on the North Shore.
A new 45 foot boat is being
especially built to be added in
There are six marine police
posts. Three on the South and
three on the North Shore. Marine
Post # 1 is in Oyster Bay; Marine
Post # 2 is out of Glen Cove;
Marine Post # 3 is out of Port
Washington; Marine Post# 4isout
of East Rockaway Marine Post
# 5 is out of Freeport; Marine Post
# 6 is out of Seaford and # 7 is in
Policemen Maintain Boats
The biggest marine boats # 1
and through # 6 are supplied with a
crew of men who are adeptatany
boat and who have diversified
backgrounds including carpenters,
plumbers, welders, engine
men, painters and the like. The
policemen are expected not only
to pilot toe boats; perform police
work; but also maintain their
Coast Guard Takes Care of Ocean
There are 47,000 registered
boats in Nassau of which 37,000
are on the south shore. Suffolk
County on toe other hand has
60,000 registered boats.
The Coast Guard and the Nassau
County Marine Police have an
understanding that toe Coast
Guard responds to toe ocean
distress signals while toe police
respond to calls in Great South
A 25* Al Glass by Pacemaker with a 268 horsepower engine can
speed to overtake all law violators.
for the naw seweraae disoosal plant in Seaford.
Some boats work single shifts;
others around the clock. Typical
of police forces throughout the
country; the marine police lack
manpower and many marine
policemen have to serve overtime
especially on weekends and holidays.
the waters deeper and to obtain f i ll
Police boats are equipped with
a ship to shore radio, a regular
police radio and a siren. This
particular boat was equipped with
a fly bridge where one of the
policeman pilot the boat.
Policemen Serve In Many Roles
The Marine police ride the
waters for the safety of the
boats men in Nassau County; those
who are resentful should realize
that this service that the police
are performing may some day
save their lives. The crews are
handpicked and as such are of
the highest calibre.
On occasion they perform
duties such as doctors, nurses;
psychologists; public relations
men and educators as well as
law enforcement officers as well.
Farmingdale OBSERVER, Thursday, August 1 , 1968 Page 7
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