08/22/13 7:00pm
08/22/2013 7:00 PM
COURTESY PHOTO | Sheriff DeMarco ceremoniously smashes the champagne bottle on the bow of Marine 41.

COURTESY PHOTO | Sheriff DeMarco ceremonially smashes the champagne bottle on the bow of Marine 41.

Marine 41, the latest custom-made addition to the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office’s East End Marine Task Force, officially entered into service in a christening ceremony in Hampton Bays Thursday.

“We’re here today to christen Marine 41, but also to celebrate our success as a group with a mission to ensure secure passage and safety throughout Long Island’s beautiful East End waterways,” said Sheriff Vincent DeMarco at the ceremony at the Shinnecock U.S. Coast Guard station.

The vessel, which is designed to respond to chemical, biological weapon, nuclear and explosive scenarios, was purchased through a $1.2 million federal grant and has already started serving East End waterways. In July, the ship was used in an operation to detonate forgotten 1940s-era ordnance that had been uncovered by Superstorm Sandy on Gardiners Point Island.

Marine 41 was most recently used during a search and rescue mission on July 24 to help locate lost fisherman, John Aldridge, who was found after an extensive search about 43 miles off the coast of Montauk clinging to a buoy.

Mr. Aldridge and his family were in attendance Thursday as the Coast Guard was honored for their role in his rescue.

The ship will operate in East End waterways throughout the year, and is equiped with state-of-the-art infrared cameras, side scan sonar, emergency medical equipment and more.

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06/03/13 12:26pm
06/03/2013 12:26 PM
Suffolk Sheriff's new marine boat

COURTESY PHOTO | Marine 41 will be available to all East End marine units.

The Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office has purchased a custom-made, 41-foot emergency response ship equipped with high-tech features like side-scan sonar and forward-looking infrared cameras, allowing it to spy on bay and ocean bottoms and navigate through the night with the utmost confidence.

The vessel will be used by members of the East End Marine Task Force, established in 2007 to help coordinate marine units from across the East End. The task force includes sheriff’s deputies and U.S. Coast Guard officers. Marine law enforcement units from each of the five East End towns also signed a memorandum of agreement to share and standardize equipment and training.

The task force agreement allows participating personnel to cross town borders when needed, which “increases safety and keeps costs down,” said sheriff’s office’s marine unit commanding officer, Sgt. John Andrejack.

Sgt. Andrejack is tasked with overseeing and managing the new boat.

“I don’t know of any other vessels like this,” Sgt. Andrejack said.

The ship, Marine 41, is a C.B.R.N.E.-response vessel -— which stands for Chemical Biological Radiological Nuclear and Explosive — outfitted with radar, chart plotters and a dual-screen GPS. The boat is designed to be able to respond to a nuclear, chemical or biological attack or accident.

It’s powered by twin Cummins Diesel motors and does not have propellers. The boat is instead propelled by Hamilton Jets, which allow it to operate in very shallow water (less than three feet), officials said. The cabin air is always purified, with no outside air circulated inside. If the boat enters an area with hazardous smoke and fumes, there is constant clean air in the cabin, official said.

Marine 41 has firefighting capability with a water pump that can move 2,000 gallons a minute. It also comes with a 500-pound Davit winch to lift and recover things from the water.

“This is the most well-equipped response boat in the area,” said Sgt. Andrejack, who was involved in acquiring, designing and equipping the craft.

Officers on the task force from all different towns will crew the ship, he said.

“This vessel is crewed by multiple agencies, used for whatever town may need it for any large event,” Sgt. Andrejack explained, giveing the annual Maritime Festival in Greenport as one example. “It can be transferred from town to town when and where it is needed.”

The sheriff’s office was able to make the purchase using a $1.2 million Federal Emergency Management Agency Port Security Grant, officials said. The grant also allowed for the purchase of personal radiation protectors and 40 strong exposure suits that can be used to protect officers during severe storms or harsh winter weather, both to be distributed to members of the East End Marine Task Force.

The boat also came with a survival raft, EMT equipment and is able accommodate a patient on a backboard.

Marine 41 and all the on-board equipment cost $650,000.

A full-scale training exercise was recently performed on the boat. That simulation exercise, based on an actual recent event, involved a fishing vessel had dredged up hazardous material that the crew had to “decontaminate” before towing the vessel back to shore.

“A vessel of this capability was lacking in the region and the citizens of the East End deserve the capability and protection this asset provides,” Sgt. Andrejack said.

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01/23/13 1:20pm
01/23/2013 1:20 PM

Drugs

Parents and guardians of children under 18 can receive two free drug test kits to privately monitor their kids behavior from the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department as part of the “Test, Don’t Guess” program.

The kits can be picked up at Suffolk County Sheriff Vincent DeMarco’s offices in Riverhead and Yaphank.

“This is an important program that provides parents with the privacy that other options simply do not offer,” said Legislator Kate Browning (WF-Shirley), who chairs the Public Safety Committee. “If you are concerned about your child and are suspicious they may be using drugs, I urge you to take advantage of this free kit. We have a major drug epidemic on Long Island and this can assist in addressing the situation before it is too late.”

For more information, residents can call the sheriff’s office at 852-3436 or Legislator Browning’s office at 852-1300.

10/26/12 11:52am
10/26/2012 11:52 AM

The Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office is urging residents to prepare for a potentially large storm headed toward the northeast. Hurricane Sandy is on course to impact the area as early as Sunday night into Monday and Tuesday.

The Sheriff’s Office offered some guidelines for residents to prepare:

Secure your home

Loose, lightweight objects, such as lawn furniture and garbage cans should be brought inside. Anchor objects that will be unsafe to bring inside, such as gas grills or propane tanks.

If your basement is vulnerable to flooding, move any valuable items to upper floors.

Stock up on non-perishable food and water

One gallon of water per person, per day.

Ready to eat food and a manual can opener.

Fill prescriptions for important medication

Have a supply of important medications. Don’t wait for the last minute.

Assemble an emergency supply kit

First-Aid kit, flashlights and extra batteries and a battery-operated radio.

Charge all cell phones

Help others prepare

Check on friends, relatives and neighbors, especially older adults and people with disabilities or health conditions and assist them with their preparation.