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Old 06-18-2009, 12:50 PM   #1
Join Date: Dec 2004
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Default The Marine Patrol Is Ruining Boating

I know I am probably complaining but I believe over the last few years the Marine Patrol is ruining any boating people try to enjoy during the week. Yet on weekends they sit and watch dangerous situations and do nothing because it is so busy.

I consider myself a safe boater to the point I am always pissing people off for slowing down because of the 150 foot rule. I live here full time on the lake and own a boat and a couple watercrafts.

I have been pulled over twice in the last two years during the week when there were no other boats around basically except the Marine Patrol.

I have had them turn around and follow me for no reason other then something to do and see if they can find a reason to ticket me on at least 8 to 10 other ocassions during the week in the last couple years.

It is to the point now I am afriad to go on the water during the week for fear of a ticket. It just isn't fun.

My first time I got pulled over was in a no wake zone. I was idling through and the only boat in site and the Marine Patrol was sitting in the middle of this area. I had my throttle all the way idled down and speedo was reading but doesn't below 5 MPH. The officer yells at me slow down this is a no wake zone. I yell back I can't go any slower under power I am throttled all the way back. He cruises over and says you are making a wake. Yeah well it is dead calm I am pushing water with my hull at any speed. I say ok I will pull it in and out of neutral to get through here. He then says hey what have you got for an exhaust. He sees thru hull sticking out but no noise. I explain that the boat had switchable exhaust but it is disconnected. He says open it up i want to see. I do as he asks. He asks if they are welded shut I say no like a dumb ass they just electrically disconnect from the valves and switch. He starts to go through a safety check and in the middle of this unties me and says we are headed for the rocks. He moves away with all my paperwork and leaves me. I guess I have to fend for myself. I start the boat and pull it out in the middle of the water again. In the mean time he is checking paperwork and there goes several papers flying into the water out of his hand. he makes no attempt to recover them. I would consider that littering. Anyway comes back and hands me a ticket for switchable exhaust. i explain to him it is not hooked up. He says disconnecting it is not permitly disabled. What right did he have to pull me over and check it to start with. There was no probable cause.

Last year it is a little before sunset so I put my lights on, which I rarely do. I am heade home about 2 miles away and I see the blue lights. Agin i am the only boat in sight so it must be me. I pullover and the officer saya your rear light is out. i look up and it is on. He saya it was flashing on and off. Ok let me check it must be a bad bulb or connection. It stays on while he is there and he does a safety check Ok no problem. I take off. I get 1/2 mile closer to home and here he comes again. It is going off on and again. I am going to give you a ticket if you don't fix it. Alright I take it out and check the bulb and connection not a lot I can do. Now it is starting to get dark and I really probably do need it but I could have been home 45 minutes ago if you had let me. I take off and it flashes on and off again. He pulls me over again. I told you I am going to give you a ticket if you don't fix it. I explain it is now dark and I can't see to fix it and have no extra bulb with me. I am only 1.5 miles from home I will fix it tomorrow. He isn't happy. I ask him what he would like me to do? Finaaly he says he will follow me home. That was nice of him but hell I would have been home 1.5 hours ago while it was light if you just let me know my light was flickering. At least he didn't give me a tciket.

Almost everytime I have seen the Marine Patrol during the week they flip it around and follow me for a while. this is almost without exception if I am on the watercraft. Why?

Yesterday I am on the lake with the watercraft and coming into Center Harbor. In front of me are two watercrafts they were together talking but then separate and take off before I reach them. I am following them as a Marine Patrol boat is coming out of Center Harbor. He cruises by all of us gong the other way. But wait after he gets by me he flips it around and follows. The two in front of me slow as they enter through the markers coming into Center Harbor so I am forced to also. They get through and as i am paaing through I see the blue lights. This time he is not after me but them. He passes me within 25 feet at at least 30 MPH through that narrow set of markers to get to them. Thanks for the wake Jackass. So what you had your blue lights on. They might have got away had you had to idle behind me for two more minutes because we were all in the bay. I saw they did nothing wrong except possibly when they took off they may only have been 100 feet apart but at least they gave it an effort.

Sorry that incident yesterday just set me off again this year. Yet on the weekends I have seen jetskis jumping wake within 25 feet of boats and 20 other laws being broken within 200 feet of a Marine Patrol boat and nothing.

Just wonder if anybody else has had the same experiences with the Marine Patrol. They are suppose to be there for our safety not to hassle us. If somebody is doing something wrong pull them over and let them know if it was a willful attempt at breaking the law. Explain it is just for their safety and eductaion. If they do it again sue ticket them.

Now in defense of the Marine Patrol I will say I have had to call them a couple times with questions and once went down in person to have them explain if I needed a stciker on my watercraft to show it was a three person unit and in those cases they were very understanding knowledgable and friendly but these were all the fullltime officers. I think the young summer help with a little authority is giving them a real bad reputation.
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