In the 1960s, the Sheriff's Office created a Marine Unit to respond to water related incidents and emergencies. Some of the incidents they specialize in are swift water rescues, floods, drowning, evidence recovery, and search and rescue. Anoka County has both the Rum and Mississippi Rivers running through it, as well as 165 lakes ranging in size from one acre to 1,481 acres. All lakes and rivers in Anoka County are the responsibility of the Sheriff's Office. The Marine Unit is comprised of 20 members; members have advanced diving certificates and train monthly, including under ice dives in winter months.
Serving The Community
The Marine Unit was the first agency in the water responding at the I35W Bridge collapse, and one of only a few dive teams that searched the large scale water disaster site searching for victims. The Marine Unit is also part of the National Incident Management System which is a joint Federal program allocating assets to neighboring counties and states in times of natural disasters which allows the Marine Unit to assist anywhere in the Midwest region.