NAPLES, FL, June, 19, 2008 -- Capt. Joseph DiMartino is the new owner of TowBoatUS Naples and TowBoatUS Marco, two on-the-water towing ports that provide tows back to a marina or launch ramp, fuel deliveries, battery jump-starts, or ungrounding services for recreational boaters. TowBoatUS Naples is located in Naples Bay and TowBoatUS Marco is located near Marco Pass and Isle of Capri. The ports provide coverage from Wiggins Pass south to Cape Sable extending 50 nautical miles offshore.
The two ports are equipped with four response vessels that that can be identified by their distinctive red hulls with white bow stripes and “TowBoatU.S.” lettering along their sides. Onboard each is a full complement of towing and salvage equipment including extra fuel, engine fluids, and battery “jump packs” to handle every breakdown from running out of fuel to running aground. In addition, a variety of commercial assistance salvage and dewatering pumps as well as dive gear is aboard each vessel. Refloating services are also provided by land or sea.
DiMartino, a former yacht delivery and tugboat captain, also previously owned a Ft. Lauderdale based towing company that assisted mega-yachts and small freighters. DiMartino has hired Chris Smith, Gene Costa, and Jim Biasella - all USCG-licensed captains – to help him operate the towboats.
The Southwest Florida region is popular with local boaters and fishermen as well as cruisers transiting the coast. The most common request for assistance is from boaters who have inadvertently grounded on a shoal and require a gentle pull back to deeper water. Nationwide, BoatUS 24-hour Dispatch Centers received over 60,000 requests for assistance from boaters last year.
Similar to a roadside auto club, BoatUS offers “unlimited” on-the-water assistance plans for saltwater boaters at just $135 a year, which includes BoatUS membership. Without a towing plan, boaters face costs that nationally average about $600 per incident. Boaters in need of towing assistance can reach TowBoatUS Naples and TowBoatUS Marco by calling the company directly at 239-389-1177; by VHF radio on channel 16; or through the BoatUS toll-free Dispatch Service at 800-391-4869 or visit http://www.BoatUS.com/Towing for more information.
BoatUS – Boat Owners Association of The United States – is the nation’s leading advocate for recreational boaters providing its 650,000 members with a wide array of consumer services including a group-rate marine insurance program that insures nearly a quarter million boats; the largest fleet of more than 500 towing assistance vessels; discounts on fuel, slips, and repairs at over 885 Cooperating Marinas; boat financing; and a subscription to BoatUS Magazine, the most widely read boating publication in the U.S. For membership information visit http://www.BoatUS.com or call 800-395-2628.