New jet boat purchase to ensure efficient and safe water rescues - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

New jet boat purchase to ensure efficient and safe water rescues

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YAKIMA, WA - The Yakima County Sheriff's Office is looking to make a brand new purchase, and it's all for your safety.

Reporter Haley Gibbs spoke with Sheriff Deputy Chief Robert Udell today, and learned that the $63,000 purchase will be for a new jet boat, ensuring a more proficient water rescue plan.

Udell says that their current boats are decades old, and although they're still working, they aren't as fast or as durable as they need to be in order to get out on the water and rescue people in a safe and timely manner.

Right now, the boats they have can't handle shallow water very well and aren't durable enough to handle the branchy areas out in the river. Also, because the Swift Water Rescue Team has water rescues year round, boats need to be able to handle the river under any circumstance.

"In the river with the water moving, you have to be able to move, and these boats were almost hazardous," Udell admitted. "And now we have, we're going to have, a state of the art boat that is designed to run in mere inches of water."

It will also be able to glide over some branches and logs out in the river, meaning the Swift Water Rescue Team will have better access to people who may get stuck in hard to reach places.

The Yakima County Sheriff's Office doesn't plan on updating their other boats at this time due to the fact that this is already a large purchase, as well as being something that will be used frequently and for years to come.

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