Officers, deputies patrol on land and water during championship game and events

A number of visitors arrived in Tampa on their boats

Several HCSO Marine Units were visible on Bay Area waterways in Downtown Tampa on Saturday.

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — While a majority of events surrounding the College Football Playoff National Championship Game are on land, a number of visitors arrived in the area through Tampa Bay.

They came in vessels of all shapes and sizes and many of them are docked in the yacht basin adjacent to the Tampa Convention Center. That’s a major reason why there is a large law enforcement presence on the water.

Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office Deputy David Reigner has been patrolling Bay area waterways for longer than he would like to admit. On Saturday, he was on the Hillsborough River on a very important mission.

“Our main job here is to assist the Tampa Police Department in just keeping the waterways safe,” Reigner explained. “[We are] making sure people aren’t putting themselves in danger along the Riverwalk …or falling in.”

Saturday afternoon he jumped in HCSO’s 900-horsepower boat to ‘keep an eye on things,’ on the water.

Reigner was expecting a much larger turnout than he encountered but he figures the cold front and subsequent rain probably had a lot to do with that. That coupled with the tragic shooting in Fort Lauderdale on Friday. So what are the special patrols looking for?

“Things that look to be out of place,” Reigner added. “We’re encouraging people to come forward with any information if anybody gives them kind of an ‘eerie feeling.”

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