The Muskingum County Sheriff’s Office is bringing back an old resource to help enforce boating safety in the area.
It bought a boat back in 1986 and used grants to help pay off overtime for deputies to run it. Those grants eventually dried up and the sheriff’s office lost touch with the boat.
When Sheriff Lutz took office back in 2009, he wanted to bring the resource back to life. The boat did need a new engine and thanks to some generous donations, one of which was from the Rick Neff Memorial and the other from Rankin and Rankin, the boat made its first appearance during the July Fourth weekend.
"It’s always important to be watching out for people and the safety of the people who are out there on the water, not only the ones who are using the boat, but the ones who are out there from being hurt by people who are using it unsafely, " says Rankin & Ranking CEO, Bob Glass.
Deputies did write-up some warning during that holiday weekend.
The mission behind the boat has changed since it was first bought though back in the 80’s.
"The boat was really used as some of the river rescue stuff too. Now, with the great fire department, volunteer fire department, and the Zanesville Fire Department, these fire departments are so prepared for emergencies in today’s times. They almost all have river rescue boats and river rescue equipment, " says Sheriff Lutz.
It will now solely be used as a police presence on the water. The boat is scheduled to be out Labor Day weekend, and Sheriff Lutz says there will also be some miscellaneous weekend in between.