The Multnomah County Sheriff's Office River Patrol Unit partners with the Oregon State Marine Board
, the Port of Portland
and the United States Coast Guard
to provide safe commercial and recreational access and passage to the country's fifth largest port, and 110 miles of waterways along the Columbia River, Willamette River, Sandy River and Multnomah Channel. In addition, the River Patrol Unit provides law enforcement and search & rescue services to all rivers, lakes, shorelines and islands in Multnomah County.
Unit members provide security protection to moorages, marinas, and houseboat communities, and respond to life-threatening calls for service, such as boat collisions, drownings, missing persons, and environmental hazards. Deputies are also proactively involved with the community, providing boater safety education and intervention through classroom activities, boat inspections, and the active enforcement of boating statutes and ordinances.
Approximately 190,000 boats are registered in Oregon, with one-third of these registered in the Portland-metropolitan area. Multnomah County is the number one ranked Oregon County for total boat use days and boat activity days (85% more than the next ranked county
) and provides the most fishing, sailing, and cruising activities. Year after year, the Columbia and Willamette Rivers rank as the most used bodies of water in the state, making Portland the number one overall destination for boating in Oregon.