Clay County has more than 11,000 registered vessels. That’s a lot of traffic on our waterways!
The Marine Unit includes one full-time deputy and one part-time deputy who cover the 35 square miles of waterways that are favorite destinations for boaters from around the region.
These deputies work diligently with neighboring agencies including Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), United States Coast Guard (USCG), U. S. Homeland Security and the Green Cove Springs Police Department. The sheriff’s office also maintains a great working relationship with the USCG Auxiliary Flotilla 14-5.
The Clay County Sheriff’s Office works with the USCG Auxiliary to conduct free, monthly boating safety classes. The classes are held monthly at:
USCG Aux Headquarters
1 Bunker Ave.
Green Cove Springs, FL 32043
Interested in taking a boating safety course? The class is taught by approved National Association of Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) certified instructors. Upon successful completion of the course, the student will receive a state-issued Boating Safety Card. Persons born on or after January 1, 1988 are required to possess a Boater Safety Card to operate any motorized vessel greater than 10 hp. Seating is limited and reservations are required. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
2017 Safe Boating Class Schedule
- August 19
- September 16
- October 21
- November 18
Marine Volunteer Program (MVP)
The CCSO Marine Unit now has a program known as the Marine Volunteer Program (MVP). Volunteers from the VIPS Program complete specialized training to become our eyes and ears on the water. Since its conception, the MVP Unit has patrolled Black Creek, Doctors Lake and the St. Johns River. Members assist the USCG Auxiliary with boating safety classes, visit local marinas and boat dealers with boating safety information, assist on National Boating Safety Week with boating safety inspections and inspect waterway markers on Black Creek and Doctors Lake. If you’d like to become a MVP, please contact the employee relations specialists at (904) 529-6062.
Boating Safety Tips
- Make a float plan before going out to let someone know where you’ll be and what time you’ll return.
- Take a cell phone or a VHF radio with you so you can call for assistance.
- Check local weather reports prior to leaving the ramp.
- Inspect your safety gear and replace any damaged or non-serviceable equipment.
- Make sure you have a properly fitting personal flotation device for every person on board.
- Discuss emergency plans with passengers.
- Consider getting towing insurance.
For more information on boating safety or marine complaints, contact Deputy Chris Castelli at (904) 591-4621.