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Old 30-09-2011, 10:00   #46
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

Why complicate the original question?

Newt was inquiring about operations like Sea-tow or Boat U.S. that provide assistance towing to mostly recreation vessels. That assistance is often for mechanical failure, or simply running out of fuel.
You can provide towing assistance within the scope of your original MMC.

Towing or pushing barges are a different animal, and are limited by the MMC. and the COI

General assistance ( free) is required by all mariners, but that assistance does not require the provider to endanger their own ship or crew.
Assistance provided can be as simple as standing by, relaying information to the CG or others, and being prepared if necessary to retrieve people from the water. You are not required to tow, board a vessel in distress.

That is my understanding..but I'm open to clarification based on the CFRs[/QUOTE]


The point of my post is that some posters were mentioning commercial towing with larger tows versus yachts. That is the point of my clarification of the differences.
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Old 30-09-2011, 10:05   #47
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

David...

I was agreeing with you..;-)
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Old 30-09-2011, 10:08   #48
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempest245 View Post
Agreed,

Why complicate the original question?

Newt was inquiring about operations like Sea-tow or Boat U.S. that provide assistance towing to mostly recreation vessels. That assistance is often for mechanical failure, or simply running out of fuel.
You can provide towing assistance within the scope of your original MMC.

Towing or pushing barges are a different animal, and are limited by the MMC. and the COI

General assistance ( free) is required by all mariners, but that assistance does not require the provider to endanger their own ship or crew.
Assistance provided can be as simple as standing by, relaying information to the CG or others, and being prepared if necessary to retrieve people from the water. You are not required to tow, board a vessel in distress.

That is my understanding..but I'm open to clarification based on the CFRs
Again I must repeat...some assistance towing companies have WAY more overlap than you are stating...why do you think so many 26' and under towboats are being built??? It's because anyone can run them as uninspected tow vessels...plus they are cheaper to operate by the fact they do fall under different regs...some boast WAY more than 1000 hp. Not too shabby for what they really should be called - engine pods for barges....

The USCG has been looking at changing the tow/tugboat regs after they made it overly restrictive to become a towing captain back a few years.
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Old 30-09-2011, 10:19   #49
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

Newt,
I would say that if you are in it for the money, depending on whether you are an owner or an operator. Then it would depend greatly on how much money you need to be content. Being an operator would pay less overall, but then the stress level would be different. If you are the owner then it brings a whole new set of stresses into the picture. With all the different regulating entities that abound in the commercial marine application it is truly a PITA, to operate, and unless you are going un - inspected and un - insured, just helping out for the fun of it and a case of beer, until you get sued, it would hardly be worth the trouble.
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Old 30-09-2011, 10:23   #50
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

To give you guys an idea, the boat I operate pays about $15,000 per year for commercial insurance. It is FAR more expensive than yacht insurance for the same hull value and P&I. Your existing insurance company would not cover you if they found out you were doing this for money.
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Old 30-09-2011, 10:27   #51
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

Hey, Bash... thanks for the link... I learned a lot about the terminology of Tug vs tow boats. Even though I worked for years on the water, I still learned something. Seems we were all wrong about what we were doing years ago.
The tragic thing in my mind is how legal exposure has changed the willingness of mariners to offer assistance to others in difficulty. I really miss the days when you followed your instinct to help out another boater without being concerned with potential legal exposure.
We have truly regressed in our willingness to help out the other guy due almost entirely to the voracious ambulance chasers who have invaded our oceans. I, for one, am sick of it so don't spend a lot of time on the water any more... safer to live in the bush in the Sierras... Capt Phil
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Old 30-09-2011, 10:34   #52
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

Maybe some of us should band together, like a village, yeah that's the ticket! Then we can help each other out without being afraid of the legal consequences. Like Capt. Phil, I am tired of all the officious officials that seem to think it is their role in life to create more regulations to live by. I am going the other, farther offshore, into the deep.
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Old 30-09-2011, 10:53   #53
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by captain58sailin View Post
Maybe some of us should band together, like a village, yeah that's the ticket! Then we can help each other out without being afraid of the legal consequences. Like Capt. Phil, I am tired of all the officious officials that seem to think it is their role in life to create more regulations to live by. I am going the other, farther offshore, into the deep.
The problem isn't necessarily YOU helping..it's WHO you are helping...or vice versa...I had many a guy going for his captain's license who couldn't tie a square knot even....shouldn't have suprised me when I looked down at his boat shoe knot..

The average joe on the water now has no clue...they barely get the boat in and out of the slip...have no clue what the safety requirements or where their stuff is....they have never anchored with their new boat, etc...etc...

These are the people you want to assist in some kind of on the water assistance? SURE...in an emergency anything may be OK...but if it's not life threatening...they can make it that way in a jiffy...people almost die or are maimed each year because because of good samaritans ... on the water or elsewhere.

For around $160 bucks a year most boaters are foolish NOT to get some kind of towing insurance...many ICW cruisers have both just in case. Sea Tow offers up to $5000 per incident in payment to a tower if one of their boats can't get to you. As most people say when they are towed safely to a marina or slip by a pro tower..."best boat iteml on the market"
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Old 30-09-2011, 11:10   #54
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

Very good points, ps... it is truly amazing that Darwinism hasn't caught up with some of these idiots! CP
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Old 30-09-2011, 11:22   #55
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

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Very good points, ps... it is truly amazing that Darwinism hasn't caught up with some of these idiots! CP
Local boating/daysailing is pretty easy as is the average assistance call...but every once and awhile...it's dicey for all involved!
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Old 30-09-2011, 11:50   #56
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
Again I must repeat...some assistance towing companies have WAY more overlap than you are stating...why do you think so many 26' and under towboats are being built??? It's because anyone can run them as uninspected tow vessels...plus they are cheaper to operate by the fact they do fall under different regs...some boast WAY more than 1000 hp. Not too shabby for what they really should be called - engine pods for barges....

The USCG has been looking at changing the tow/tugboat regs after they made it overly restrictive to become a towing captain back a few years.
So, I do see your point here.

If you've got a major investment in a boat and or a franchise..you want to maximize your income, and not limit it to the recreational boater who's out there maybe 5 months a year in the NE...
I'm guessing that is a contract or a cash business which is separate and addition to the insurance business..
The limitations are the MMC of the operator..the COI of the Vessel, vessels..and the horsepower...and to some degree the Labor Unions..

I spend alot of time in NY Harbor..I've yet to see anything but a Tug pushing or towing a barge...

So what are we talking about? towing a crane ? a work platform?
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Old 30-09-2011, 11:59   #57
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempest245 View Post
So, I do see your point here.

If you've got a major investment in a boat and or a franchise..you want to maximize your income, and not limit it to the recreational boater who's out there maybe 5 months a year in the NE...
I'm guessing that is a contract or a cash business which is separate and addition to the insurance business..
The limitations are the MMC of the operator..the COI of the Vessel, vessels..and the horsepower...and to some degree the Labor Unions..

I spend alot of time in NY Harbor..I've yet to see anything but a Tug pushing or towing a barge...

So what are we talking about? towing a crane ? a work platform?
If the work is maritime related and not specifically exluded from the franchise agreement...you might still be on the hook to pay the parent company....remember there's LOTS of non-members out there that have to pay to be assisted. At $250-$300 per hour...membership looks a lot better (for those who don't know, the fee applies from towing vessel leaving home dock to return...the average tow nowadays is $400-$600)

Not sure what is allowed and not under a specific franchise agreement but obviously you have to follow USCG regs.

26 foot uninspected tow vessels get a lot of lattitude...if you have the guts to push what you say you can then no one can really stop you. When you say tug in NYC....it could still be o/o by an assistance towing franchise...3 years ago we pushed a barge with a house on it to Long Island. Yes it was a 40 something towboat...but still owned and used by an assistance towing company.
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Old 07-11-2011, 06:11   #58
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Re: tow boat captain: good job?

There are two major Towing companies out there the Red boat and the one you can count on SEA TOW!
I have been a captain for over 16 years now and working everyday with both companies, I have found that every franchise is run a little differently.
Some owners treat their capts with respect and run a tight ship without druggies and drunks running the boats. Some owners pay really well depending on the job, regular pay, salvage pay and night time towing pay.
Others just pay the min and wear out their capts, working them to death and then just letting them go just to turn around and find another capt in the sea of 1st time captains out there.
If you are looking to start a franchise Good Luck! most of the one that actually make any money are already taken!
The ones that are available have run the business into the ground and burned every bridge they can while getting out. Meaning, overcharging customers and claiming "salvage rights" on a simple offshore tow by throwing a bilge pump into the boat and claiming that the customer would have sank if they had not been there with their "salvage" equipment to save them!!
I have seen both sides of the story in many cases.
And will say that there are a lot of good franchises out there, with really top notch operations. Unfornately there are also many pirates still out there!!
I also know that Sea Tow members are covered anywhere on the coast.
Anotherwords they will come and get you anywhere, and if they cant come they will send another legit towing company to get you free of charge up to $3000 per incident!
How are you sopposed to compete with that?
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Old 07-11-2011, 06:43   #59
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Re: Tow Boat Captain: Good Job ?

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, CaptainDoRane.
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Old 07-11-2011, 06:46   #60
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Re: tow boat captain: good job?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainDoRane View Post
There are two major Towing companies out there the Red boat and the one you can count on SEA TOW!
I have been a captain for over 16 years now and working everyday with both companies, I have found that every franchise is run a little differently.
Some owners treat their capts with respect and run a tight ship without druggies and drunks running the boats. Some owners pay really well depending on the job, regular pay, salvage pay and night time towing pay.
Others just pay the min and wear out their capts, working them to death and then just letting them go just to turn around and find another capt in the sea of 1st time captains out there.
If you are looking to start a franchise Good Luck! most of the one that actually make any money are already taken!
The ones that are available have run the business into the ground and burned every bridge they can while getting out. Meaning, overcharging customers and claiming "salvage rights" on a simple offshore tow by throwing a bilge pump into the boat and claiming that the customer would have sank if they had not been there with their "salvage" equipment to save them!!
I have seen both sides of the story in many cases.
And will say that there are a lot of good franchises out there, with really top notch operations. Unfornately there are also many pirates still out there!!
I also know that Sea Tow members are covered anywhere on the coast.
Anotherwords they will come and get you anywhere, and if they cant come they will send another legit towing company to get you free of charge up to $3000 per incident!
How are you sopposed to compete with that?
page 8 membership guide

Universal Towing Coverage:
In areas where Sea Tow is
not yet operating, Sea Tow will assist in arranging, and will
reimburse for,
assistance towing up to $225 per hour, not to
exceed $5000
PER INCIDENT, to the dock or facility that
will best facilitate the boat’s repair or transportation, with
no annual aggregate limit.
You must use a USCG licensed
professional tower
, pay the bill and submit a copy of the
invoice to Sea Tow Services International for reimbursement
at Post Office Box 1178 Southold, New York 11971.
Reimbursement requests must be postmarked within 60 days
of service received. Tows and hourly rates in excess of $225

per hour will not be paid without prior authorization.
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