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Officer On Patrol February 2006

Hot Sled­-Cattaraugus County

ECO Hansen was writing a ticket to a snowmobile operator in the Town of Ashford. Other operators were waiting for their inspections when someone yelled that a snowmobile was on fire. ECO Hansen grabbed the fire extinguisher from the back of his patrol vehicle and quickly extinguished the fire. The brake pad had overheated and a fire erupted under the fuel tank. Without ECO Hansen's quick action, the nearly new snowmobile would have been quickly and totally destroyed.

Three Strikes-Warren County

ECO Van Anden was on snowmobile patrol on Prospect Mountain Highway when he observed a snowmobile being operated at an extremely high rate of speed. Van Anden clocked the sled at 76 mph with his radar gun, and initiated a stop. After being pulled over, the snowmobile operator said, "I hope you are not the MORE Team." He explained that three weeks prior he had been snowmobiling near Hunter Mountain and a MORE Team member had stopped and ticketed him for snowmobiling on forest preserve land.

Then, on the next weekend, he decided to go to Big Moose, where he was stopped again by a MORE Team and ticketed for operating a snowmobile where doing so is not permitted. On this weekend, he had decided to go to Lake George, and had dutifully researched where he could legally operate his snowmobile. Officer Van Anden informed him that he was, indeed, correct about being able to operate his snowmobile on Prospect Mountain Highway. However, ECO Van Anden confirmed the man's worst fears when he advised him that he was, in fact, a member of the MORE Team and the man would receive a ticket for operating at 76 mph in a 30-mph zone. The Division of Law Enforcement's Marine Off-Road Enforcement Teams specialize in enforcement of laws that regulate the operation of boats, all-terrain vehicles and snowmobiles.

Tip Leads to Big Catch-Kings County

ECOs Bartoszewski and Freeman responded to a request for assistance from an investigator with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration concerning illegally imported oysters from Hong Kong. Upon arriving at the scene in Brooklyn, the ECOs determined that the 31 boxes of oysters in question were taken from uncertified waters. After interviewing the importer, the ECOs determined that he did not hold a valid shellfish shipper's permit. The shellfish were seized and the importer was charged with illegal commercialization of wildlife, failure to possess a shellfish shipper's permit, possession of untagged shellfish, and possession of shellfish taken from uncertified waters.

Ask the ECO

Q: How fast can I drive a snowmobile on a road posted for snowmobile use?

A: By definition, a snowmobile is considered a vehicle within the Vehicle and Traffic Law. Therefore, Vehicle and Traffic laws apply to snowmobile operators. Just like driving a car, when operating a snowmobile on a roadway, you must obey all posted speed limits, signs, and rules of the road. Snowmobiles may only be operated on roadways posted for snowmobile use.
- Lt. Ken Didion

Real stories from officers in the field
Compiled by Bob Lucas
Director of Law Enforcement

- This article was taken from the Conservationist, February 2006 Issue


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