Boat Patrol

What the Water Safety Patrol Officers Do…


During contacts with boaters, Water Safety Patrol Officers educate the public on how to be safe and and legal on the water.


When boaters are in trouble, the Water Safety Patrol helps boaters to find assistance and when necessary, provides assist.


The Water Safety Patrol Officers enforce all State of Wisconsin, Vilas County, and Town of Manitowish Waters boating laws and ordinances.

MW Water Safety Patrol


The Water Safety Patrol was established in Manitowish Waters in the 1960’s. At that time there was one part time officer.

Current Officers:

As of 2024 there are four Water Safety Patrol Officers for the Town of Manitowish Waters.

Dan Perry: Water Patrol Administrator and Officer
Phil Horter: Water Patrol Officer
Joe Kraetke: Water Patrol Officer
Tony Justice: Water Patrol Officer

Presence on the Waters::

In 2023, the Water Safety Patrol was on the water for ~800 hours and had 6,864 contacts with the public.

Bodies of Waters patrolled:

Alder, Clear, Fawn, Island, Little Star, Manitowish, Spider, Stone, and Rest Lakes and all connecting water ways.


The Water Safety Patrol Officers are employed by the Town of Manitowish Waters as part of the budgeting process. The Water Safety Patrol equipment is purchased by the Town. The Town is eligible for a partial reimbursement of costs based on a state formula and criteria resulting in a varying amount of reimbursement from year to year.

The Patrol Boats:

The Town of Manitowish Waters as of 2024 has two patrol boats. Each are equipped with communication, law enforcement, basic first aid, and breathalyzer equipment. Both are capable of getting from one spot on the water to another quickly when necessary.