By Tamas Mondovics
It is safe to say that the start of the 2016 summer boating season is a great opportunity for experienced, new and prospective boaters to invest the time and effort in some education, reminders and services that may come in handy while on the water.
For this reason, the month of May has been annually designated as National Boating Safety Month, encouraging and assisting recreational boaters to have their vessels inspected through a Vessel Safety Check (VSC) and to make sure their boats are safe and have the proper safety equipment.
According to the U.S. Coast Guard Boating Safety Division, and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC), the state continues to lead the nation with nearly a million recreationally registered vessels, and hundreds of boating accidents, coupled with a great number of fatalities each year.
To help promote boating safety this boating season, Sea Tow of Tampa Bay, a local franchise of the boat service company, is standing by 24-hours a day, seven days a week to assist any and all boaters in the Tampa and St. Petersburg area waters, and is urging all boaters to be prepared and put safety first while enjoying themselves out on the bay area waterways.
“Our mission and goal is to provide peace of mind on the water as we provide our members commitment to safety and customer satisfaction, which has helped make us one of the leading and most respected marine assistance provider in the world,” said Sea Tow of Tampa Bay Owner Cile Moreno, who with the support of several family members and a five-member team of USCG licensed, trained and qualified captains are standing by to assist boaters in need.
“People go out on the water unprepared, which often means missing the basics and the required equipment including life jackets, anchors, a horn or sound-producing device, fire extinguishers and a brief description of its operation (P.A.S.S.) and flares or other visual distress signals just to mention a few,” Cile said. Just having a simple checklist on hand is a great start and can save a life.”
Cile and her staff operate five vessels to be able to quickly assist those in need within both sides of the bay and nearby waterways.
The company currently offers annual memberships at $179, which Cile said, “Beats the average one-time cost of $750 per tow.” To get or renew a Sea Tow membership, contact (727) 547-1868, or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.seatow.com/local/tampabay/.