The Caddo Sheriff's Office has received two Waverunner personal watercrafts for its Marine Unit as part of the Yamaha companies Law Enforcement Loan Program.The watercrafts were obtained at no cost by the Sheriff's Office through an agreement with Yamaha and local dealer Mark Alleman of Alleman Cycle Plex.  The Sheriff's Office will use the watercraft for up to nine months, after which they'll be replaced with newer equipment. The Waverunners will be used in rotation with the Marine Unit's other equipment.

"With local budgets stretched to the limit, the Law Enforcement Loan Program is serving a critical need in helping first responders carry out crucial work," Prator said.

Alleman added, "With their increased size, reliability, stability, and storage capacity, Yamaha Waverunners and other personal watercraft have become ideal patrol and rescue vehicles."

Using a personal watercraft allows deputies to patrol closer to the shoreline and in shallow water areas, providing better coverage by the Marine Unit and allowing deputies to get closer to the citizens they serve.  The Waverunners also provide a safer option when patrolling around sand bars and other more populated areas of Red River.

A reduction in fuel costs is another benefit, Prator said.  "We can burn 60 to 70 gallons of gas a day by putting a larger boat on the water. Two Waverunners will use half that," he said.

Yamaha Motor Corporation has sponsored the Waverunner Law Enforcement Loan Program for over a decade.  Yamaha and local dealers have loaned more than 10,000 personal watercrafts to first responders on the local, state, and federal level, including donations during Hurricane Katrina and the gulf oil spill.