The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office is pleased to announce that, after a five year rebuild, the Sheriff’s Posse’s airboat is now up and running. The rebuild included a complete stripping of the boat, repainting the inside, a new plastic covering on the bottom, a new stainless steel engine mount, and a cage for the propeller. All of the repairs were made by volunteer Posse members.
The airboat allows Posse members to operate it in areas that are inaccessible to other boats. Additionally, the environment suffers less damage from airboats than from other motorboats. With almost zero draft, the airboat makes an ideal vessel for flood search and rescue on our river bottoms.
The Sheriff’s Posse purchased the airboat in 1996 using funds from their annual fundraiser. Since its purchase, the airboat has been used during oil spills in the bay to assist in the rescue of injured birds and wildlife. With the airboat, Posse members have also assisted the Department of Fish and Game and other agencies with damage estimates on the bay.
The Sheriff’s Posse is a completely volunteer group of dedicated men and women who are supervised by deputies from the department’s Special Services Division. The Posse consists of three units: the mounted posse, ground, and marine units. They assist the Sheriff’s Office with search and rescue missions and community outreach and education. Their award-winning mounted posse has been seen in many parades and competitions.
The Sheriff’s Posse is supported exclusive by fundraisers and donations. If you are interested in learning more about the posse or you wish to make a donation, please contact Sgt. Phil Buihner at (707) 268-3638.