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Sea Tow sees 30 percent jump on holiday weekend

Sea Tow Services International today said it experienced a 30 percent increase in the number of requests for on-the-water assistance during the Fourth of July weekend.

The tow company, based in Southold, N.Y., described the holiday as moderately busy.

“Reports from across the country indicate that boaters stayed close to home this year. However, that trend could be equally reflective of the unpredictable weather patterns that plagued much of the East Coast as it is of current economic conditions,” said Capt. Joseph Frohnhoefer III, Sea Tow’s vice president of operations, in a statement.

While call volume at the company’s 24-hour national dispatch center was statistically on par with last year, it experienced a 30 percent increase in the number of requests for on-the-water assistance.

Of the more than 1,100 service calls reported, there were 682 tows, 119 ungroundings, 103 fuel-drop requests, 99 jump-starts, 61 salvages, 19 maydays and 11 MARBS. Nearly 25 percent of the calls came during off-peak hours (between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m.) and Sea Tow captains were involved in at least a half-dozen lifesaving incidents across the country. Sea Tow Fort Myers, Fla., Sea Tow Wrightsville Beach, N.C., and Sea Tow Palm Beach, Fla., reported the highest activity levels in the network.

Sea Tow’s franchise network employed more than 600 staffers and had more than 350 boats on patrol that burned more than 20,000 gallons of fuel while assisting boaters in need throughout the three-day weekend. More than 150 boats and numerous man-hours also were volunteered to local fireworks celebrations throughout the country.

The results of this year’s statistical analysis include the Sea Tow network’s activity level from July 4-July 6, with more than 80 percent of the network reporting.

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