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We are supported by the best marina owners in the country creating a nationwide network of marine industry professionals to manage check-ins, provide maintenance and deliver concierge services to all Boatsetters.
Last revision: July 4, 2016
Sea Tow Boatsetter Service Agreement IN EMERGENCY SITUATIONS: ALWAYS HAIL THE U.S. COAST GUARD FIRST on VHF Channel 16 or call 911. Have everyone put on a life jacket, anchor the vessel if possible, fly a distress flag and follow instructions given.
How to Contact Sea Tow any time for On-Water Non-emergency Assistance:
- Hail “Sea Tow, Sea Tow, Sea Tow” on VHF channel 16;
- Call our 24/7 National Dispatch Center at 855-726- 4633;
SEA TOW BOATSETTER SERVICE AGREEMENT
Terms and Their Meanings
The following terms are defined and binding in order to help Boatsetter understand the services that Sea Tow will provide when services are requested by renter(s)’ vessels rented via Boatsetter.
Assistance Towing: Non-emergency assistance provided to a disabled vessel (as defined in the Federal Register 1988 and Code of Federal Regulations).
Covered Vessel: The single, specific vessel being rented via Boatsetter entitled to Sea Tow on-water assistance at the time it becomes disabled. Dangerous Surf: Breaking waves on shore, on a shoal, or in an inlet (typically due to adverse conditions) that threaten the safety of either the rented vessel or the Sea Tow vessel, and/or as determined by the Sea Tow Captain on scene.
Disabled Vessel: A rented vessel which, while being operated, has been rendered incapable of proceeding under its own power and is in need of assistance.
Disentanglement: Removal of a line, rope, or other foreign object from the underwater running gear of a disabled vessel to remedy the disablement.
Fuel Delivery: Delivery of container(s) of gasoline or diesel fuel to a disabled vessel to remedy the disablement.
Home Area: The geographic area of responsibility (AOR) that a Sea Tow franchise covers in which the home port of the vessel rented via Boatsetter is located.
Home Port: The marina, launching ramp, dock or mooring for the covered vessel, from which the rental initiated, as specified by Boatsetter in advance of disablement. Incident: Any event or series of events arising from the same occurrence that rendered the vessel disabled. An incident is deemed ongoing until it is shown to be cured.
Jump Start: Starting a disabled vessel’s engine by attaching an external power supply to the starting circuit to remedy the disablement.
Primary Vessel: The vessel designated by Boatsetter prior to disablement, from which the home port is determined. Proof of rental via Boatsetter is required at the time it is disabled.
Rental Period: The specific period of time during which a covered vessel is rented by an individual via Boatsetter.
Safe Port: One that can accommodate the safe mooring of a vessel and has available a means of communication (per USCG SAR Policy, “Safe Haven”).
Salvage Operations: Any act or activity undertaken to assist a vessel or any other property in danger and in any waters whatsoever (per the IMO International Salvage Conference 1989).
Sea Tow Services International Inc.: The corporate office is responsible for the administration of the Sea Tow worldwide membership program and the network of Sea Tow franchisees who provide assistance to Sea Tow members and other boaters.
Sea Tow Franchisee: Each Sea Tow Franchise is independently owned and operated by a Sea Tow Franchisee and charged with an exclusive geographical area of responsibility (AOR) in which to provide Sea Tow Boatsetter Service Agreement V0716 2 services to Sea Tow members and other boaters through its deployment of vessels and personnel (including Sea Tow Captains), determination of optimum ports of operation, and whether and how to provide services upon circumstances presented and with safety as the priority. A Sea Tow member is generally assigned by Sea Tow Services International Inc. to a specific franchisee’s AOR in which the member’s home port is located, and that Franchisee is then responsible for providing member privileges, under this Membership Agreement, to that member.
Sea Tow Captains: Sea Tow Captains are trained professionals with significant boating experience. Sea Tow Captains meet the standards of the United States Coast Guard as licensed Merchant Marine Officers. In the event that a covered vessel becomes disabled and needs assistance towing in an AOR, a Sea Tow Captain will respond under the direction of the Sea Tow Franchisee, and in his/her professional discretion, determine the best course of action.
Areas of ServiceThe following rules apply when an incident occurs to a covered vessel that is:
Within the Covered Vessel’s Home Area: Service will be provided for the covered vessel, per incident per rental period, as follows: assistance towing to its home port or, to the nearest dock or facility, that in Boatsetter and the Sea Tow Captain’s judgment, will best facilitate repair or transportation of the vessel, or Alternatives to Towing (as indicated below).
Out of the Covered Vessel’s Home Area: When out of the covered vessel’s home area or when the covered vessel does not have a designated home area, and, in either case, in an area where Sea Tow is operating, the covered vessel will receive one of the following services per incident per rental period: assistance towing of the covered vessel to the nearest dock or facility, that in Boatsetter and the Sea Tow Captain’s judgment, will best facilitate repair or transportation of the vessel; Alternatives to Towing (as indicated below); or, assistance towing of the covered vessel to its home port where the home port is in the Sea Tow area (AOR) adjacent to where the incident occurred.
Out-of-All Areas: In areas where Sea Tow is not yet operating, or when the covered vessel does not have a designated home area, the renter will receive, per incident, assistance in arranging, and reimbursement for assistance towing of up to $200 per hour, not to exceed $2500 per incident, to the nearest dock or facility that will best facilitate the boat’s repair or transportation, with no annual aggregate limit. A USCG licensed professional tower must be used and the bill must be paid by the renter. In order to receive reimbursement the renter must: submit a copy of the paid invoice to Sea Tow Services International, Attn: Boatsetter Service Reimbursement, PO Box 1178, Southold, New York 11971 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org, postmarked or emailed within 60 days of the date services are received, and Sea Tow’s review shall be prompt, reasonable, final and binding.
Service PrivilegesTowing Services: One vessel will be provided per incident for assistance towing, or other covered service, when the covered vessel becomes disabled while away from the covered vessel’s home port. If multiple Sea Tow vessels are required additional charges may apply.
Alternatives to Towing: In the sole discretion of the Sea Tow Captain, upon the conditions presented, and to remedy the disablement, the covered vessel may receive, as an alternative to towing the covered vessel, a jump start, fuel delivery, disentanglement (no diver), or other on scene service, at no additional charge to the customer except for containers of fuel, parts or non-covered services used (e.g., diver, salvage, special unusual requests). If the disablement cannot be remedied on scene, the covered vessel will receive Towing Services.
Ungroundings: The covered vessel will receive, per incident, free ungrounding assistance to covered vessel(s) when all five of the following conditions apply; the vessel, is in a stable, safe condition, not in dangerous surf or inside a dangerous surf line, surrounded by water on all sides, has some movement (i.e., rocking, or ability to rock), and can be refloated upon initial arrival or at the next high tide in 15 minutes or less by one Sea Tow boat. Ungroundings that do not meet the foregoing criteria are considered salvage services and are invoiced as such. If a Sea Tow captain determines that a particular case is a salvage, this will be made clear to the Boatsetter captain or Charterer if conditions allow. Additionally, Boatsetter will be notified at the first available opportunity.
Exclusions, Limitations and Reservations:
Boats Over 65 Feet: Service is not available in all areas. If more than one Sea Tow vessel is required there may be a charge for such equipment and services.
Disentanglements: Disentanglements are performed at the sole discretion of the Sea Tow Captain as an alternative to providing Towing Services, with safety as the priority. Additional charges will apply if a diver is used. Heavy Traffic During periods of heavy boating traffic or high volumes of assistance requests, response times may vary, however, best efforts will be made to respond to an assistance request within 1 hour of a call.
Insurance: Sea Tow’s Services are not insurance nor part of an insurance policy and do not provide for any compensation, liability or damages arising out of injury to persons, boats or property. Service charges as part of an ongoing insurance claim such as a salvage operation, wreck removal or the towing portion of a damage claim covered by a hull insurance policy are not covered by this agreement. Any payment provided by an insurance company to Boatsetter, the boat owner or the renter for services rendered by Sea Tow is payable to Sea Tow, and if paid to the Boatsetter, the boat owner or the renter must be paid over to Sea Tow immediately. Insurance companies are not third party beneficiaries of the Service Agreement for Boatsetter customers.
Jump Starts: For safety reasons, jump starts will not be provided at home ports. On-water jump starts will be performed on scene only if the Sea Tow Captain, in his sole discretion, determines that the service can be performed safely.
Marine Sanctuaries and Restricted Areas: If an incident occurs in a marine sanctuary or other legally protected or restricted area, Boatsetter, the boat owner or the renter may be responsible for additional charges if and when incurred, including, but not limited to, standby time, additional equipment, and transport of local, state or federal officials to the site. Mayday Situations Responses and services may be delayed or deferred to give priority and assistance to lives or vessels in grave or imminent danger.
Non-towing Assistance Items: Items such as containers of fuel, parts, de-watering pumps, SCUBA divers, haul-outs, and the like, are not privileges of the Service Agreement and will be separately invoiced.
Offshore Coverage: Covered vessels will receive services offshore when weather conditions, available equipment, personnel and communications permit. Such service varies by area (AOR).
Other Towing Services: Towing invoices from non-Sea Tow providers will not be reimbursed when there is a Sea Tow provider in the area. A Good Samaritan or other unlicensed individual may not charge for services as it is in violation of Federal law. Boatsetter, the boat owner and/or the renter will not receive reimbursement for this type of service. Sea Tow is not responsible for the actions of providers who have no pre-existing contractual relationship with Sea Tow.
Per Incident Limitation: Services are limited to one tow (or Alternatives to Towing) per incident.
Pre-existing Problems: Boatsetter represents and warrants that the covered vessel has been and will be in working order upon initiation of the rental period. Therefore, pre-existing problems are not covered by this Service Agreement.
Proof of Rental: Evidence of rental of a covered vessel by rental agreement must be provided at the time of service. If such evidence is unavailable at the time of service the incident will be treated as noncovered and charges may be incurred if proof of rental is not provided to Sea Tow within 24 hours of service.
Salvage Operations: Salvage operations, including, but not limited to, vessels abandoned, wrecked, beached, on fire, damaged by fire, taking on water, sinking, sunk, previously sunk, in the surf or surf line, or in any other state of peril, are not privileges of the agreement. If the Sea Tow Captain reasonably contends that the assistance required to be rendered to a vessel falls outside the pre-agreed assistance services and deems the situation a salvage, the Sea Tow Captain will notify the vessel operator, provided, however, conditions permit notice. In these situations, Sea Tow will seek a reward as allowed under General Maritime Law. Boatsetter will be additionally notified at the earliest possible opportunity.
Severe Weather: Responses and services may be delayed or deferred due to severe or dangerous weather conditions. In such cases, the U.S. Coast Guard or other government agencies may be notified and requested to respond.
Bahamas, Mexico and Canada Service for Return to the United States
These service guidelines may be modified or terminated at any time without notice. In all cases the Boatsetter renter, owner or a designated representative must be aboard the vessel.
Vessels disabled in the Bahamas, Mexico or Canada will be serviced in accordance with the Collaborative Boating Inc. Renter Agreement.
Privileges provided under Out-of-all-Areas service are limited to USD $200 per hour or $5,000.00 per incident, whichever is less. The charter, owner and/or Boatsetter is responsible for any additional charges, including but not limited to, dockage while the tow is arranged, flying guests, passengers or themselves to and from the United States, customs fees, and the like.
Vessels will be towed to the United States only from a safe port upon prior arrangement. Vessels will not be towed during periods of storms or conditions that could deteriorate or endanger the vessel, captain, crew or passengers of the towed vessel. The Sea Tow Captain will, in his/her sole discretion, decide when to perform the service.
Tows to the United States will only be performed Monday through Friday by prior arrangement. All vessels being towed from a foreign port must clear U.S. Customs or other as U.S. law indicates. All U.S. Customs, Bonding, Agent or other costs for the tower and the renter or owner are the responsibility of the renter, owner and/or Boatsetter. Stand-by time of the towboat caused by Customs delays will be the responsibility of the renter, owner and Boatsetter and invoiced per the franchise’s rate card. All rights are reserved to fly in parts or personnel to effect repairs in lieu of towing or to place personnel on board the vessel to assist in towing.
Vessels that cannot be serviced in the nearest Bahamas facility at Marsh Harbour, Nassau or Freeport, and require a tow back to the United States, must make arrangements with Sea Tow Services International. These vessels may only be towed to commercial ports in the United States. Vessels may be towed from West End, Grand Bahama Island to Lake Worth Inlet, West Palm Beach, FL, Fort Pierce Inlet, Fort Pierce, FL or from Bimini to Port Everglades, Fort Lauderdale, FL or Port of Miami, Miami, FL. In lieu of towing the vessel, it may be shipped via freighter to the United States. The renter, owner and/or Boatsetter is responsible for arrangements and Customs fees and paperwork; Sea Tow will pay freight charges only in accordance to the Out-of-All-Areas service provision.
MEXICO – WEST COAST
When possible, vessels will be towed back to the United States from Ensenada, Mexico to the closest port allowed by U.S. Customs. All arrangements must be via Sea Tow Services International. All other vessels south of the United States border will be serviced according to the Out-of-All-Areas service provision.
MEXICO – EAST COAST
All vessels will be serviced according to the Out-of-All-Areas service provision.
Governance in all Circumstances
- Services can vary by area, depending on conditions that exist at the time. In the interest of safety, the Sea Tow Captain on scene will exercise his professional discretion, which cannot be interfered with or questioned then or thereafter, and which is final and binding, to provide services or not, alter or terminate services provided, engage resources or not, delay, tow, repair, or wait for tide, weather or other conditions. Safety is always the number one priority.
- This Service Agreement is not a promise of rescue and is restricted to the privileges which can be provided with equipment immediately available to the Sea Tow Franchisee, Captain or other operator. Boatsetter Service Agreement privileges will be provided during the active membership term and within safe parameters and on-water capabilities, and will not be rendered when the disabled vessel cannot be safely or reasonably reached or secured and/or properly serviced without damage or danger to either vessel or persons.
- SEA TOW SERVICES INTERNATIONAL, SEA TOW FRANCHISEES, SEA TOW CAPTAINS, THEIR AGENTS AND ASSIGNS, ARE NOT LIABLE FOR INCIDENTAL, ACTUAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, PROPERTY DAMAGE OR LOSS, PERSONAL INJURY, DAMAGE TO VESSELS, CARGO, CREW, OR PASSENGERS, INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE (BUT NOT GROSS NEGLIGENCE) BY THE PROVISION OF SERVICES, OR THE ELECTION TO FOREGO, DELAY OR CHANGE, OR IN ANY MANNER UNDER THE TERMS OF THIS AGREEMENT. BY ACCEPTING SERVICE, ALL RISKS OF TOWING, SALVAGE, SERVICE OR LACK THEREOF, ARE ASSUMED SOLELY BY THE MEMBER.
- Service Agreement privileges do not apply in the following situations, including, but not limited to: towing after disabled vessel is pushed away from dock; fuel delivery or jump starts at home dock; use of pumps, divers, airbags or other special equipment; navigational assistance; escort, search for lost vessels; retrieving anchors or other equipment; charges to repair, haul, launch, commission, decommission, moor, dock or other marina charges.
- REMEMBER: In an EMERGENCY – Hail the Coast Guard first via VHF Marine Radio, on Channel 16 with location and nature of distress, number of people aboard and description of your vessel. Put on your life jacket and stay with your vessel, do not try to swim ashore if any distance away. Personal Location Beacons (PLB or EPIRB) are recommended.
Questions? Call 844.262.8738