Jake Petetit of Lookingglass brought his new Willie Drift Boat into town for an inspection Saturday.
He wants to takes his wife Debbie Petetit out in the boat for some fall Chinook fishing on the nearby lakes.
He’s been rowing the boat for four years, but now he wants to install a motor. In order to do that he has to get the boat inspected, he said.
“It’s a pain, but it’s hoops you’ve got to jump through to get it on the up and up,” he said.
So he brought his boat to the Bi-Mart parking lot in Roseburg Saturday morning, and Douglas County Sheriff’s Office Marine Deputy Todd Wingfield gave it a safety inspection.
Wingfield checked each boat that was brought Saturday for registration and stickers.
He also checked for properly fitting life jackets and, for boats 16 feet and longer, throwable flotation devices.
Fire extinguishers must be carried on boats with gasoline motors, he said, and working engine blower fans are also important to keep exhaust out of the boat.
Wingfield has been with the sheriff’s office for 14 years and joined the marine patrol a year ago.
He much prefers his new job, he said. He and the one other marine patrol deputy spend a lot of time out on the county’s waterways.
“We go out around the county, Diamond Lake all the way to Winchester Bay and cover all the lakes and rivers,” he said.
But it’s not all fun and games. Failing to carry proper registration can result in a $260 fine, he said.
He checked Petetit’s paperwork and pulled out a tape measure to determine the length of Petetit’s boat.
To Petetit’s surprise, the boat turned out to be a different length than listed in the paperwork he’d received when he bought it.
Petetit said he’ll also need to get stickers on the side of the boat before he can take it out with a motor.
Mike Scott, of Roseburg, brought a boat he had bought a couple weeks ago, and he had the title but learned he needed a registration card as well.
However, Wingfield said he’d still be able to use the boat with his temporary registration.
Scott also found out he wouldn’t need a fire extinguisher on board because his motor is electric.
Scott said he plans to take the boat to Diamond Lake to fish for trout in a couple of weeks, and that will be his first trip out with it.
“I just retired, so this will be my first summer of fishing all the time,” he said.
Wingfield had already held a boat inspection in Sutherlin the previous Saturday, and plans to hold more inspections in coming weeks.
From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 15 he’ll be at Bi-Mart in Winston, and from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 29 he’ll be at McKays in Reedsport.