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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can somebody list emergency numbers to call if you break down or have an accident on the water.US & Canadian.I know there is a tow boat service by Grosse Isle.If you get towed by the coast guard,Windsor Police,Sherriff how much is the charge?Fall is a time when there are few boats on the water & it's nice to know help is a phone call away.Especially after the engine ripped off the guys boat during an essex county tournament a few weeks back.
 

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While a cell phone is a good idea it should not be your only means of communication while on big water. You should also have a VHF radio and the training on how to operate it while on any of the Great Lakes.

As far as the phone numbers go, I personally dont have them. As I understand it the Coast Guard will not come tow you in, but they will (in an emergency) remove you from your vessel and get you back to shore. Your boat will have to be retrieved on your own. Charges are unknown to me, but I would assume them to be VERY expensive.

Your options in a tournament (if you want to weigh your fish) is to flag down another competitor to either carry you and your fish in, or tow you in. If a boat will not stop to offer assistance, they are in violation of the law and should be disqualified from the tournament. Even stopping to offer the use of a cell phone or radio is enough to help and is within the law.

For thise that have been here for a while there is a towing company that was offering tow service to anyone that needed it (once a day) for a flat rate for the year. I dont remember the specifics, but I know it was a good deal and great peace of mind. I will search for the thread so you can be prepared for next year OR get it now to finish out the rest of the season.

The link to the thread from the Fishing Board is here. Ckick away!

Mini
 

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I can speak first person on this..... The Coast Guard will tow you in if you have a problem on the water and the boat won't run. There is "NO CHARGE", I repeat "NO CHARGE". Some examples are dead battery, out of gas, engine blown and just about anything else that can occur to leave us stranded.

I did just the above for the US COAST GUARD on Erie out of Cleveland for three years, and there is "NO CHARGES, I repeat "NO CHARGES" I also called a buddy officer before this post to make sure nothing has changed in the last few years, and it has not... I also had the Canadian Coast Guard tow me last fall off Erie, I was twelve miles out and they brought me in to "Erie Metro"!!!!!!! and there was no charge!!!!! this may not be common practice but they answered my distress call on channel 16 and helped me.....

The reason the Coast Guard won't leave a boat stranded empty is due to MAJOR liability,,,,, No battery no navigation lights, and picture speed boats and dark and a unmanned vessel............. LAWSUIT to who left it the Gov. can't practice this!!!!!

Last channel 16 is the international hailing and distress frequency monitored by the Coast Guard and the Sheriff also use 21 or 22 if not dire emergency and they can help us there.....

Now, if a boat is on fire and or sinking where a pump can't keep up the Coast Guard will remove you from the vessel and just take the stranded in due to their safety....

I hope we don't need the help!!!!!!!!!!

Nick Neves
 

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It is my understanding that on Lake St. Clair if you are not in immediate danger the Coast Guard will not come out and tow you, but they will call one of the tow services on the lake. I know a person that grounded his sailboat last fall and the Coast Guard on the radio checked the situation and informed him that they would call the tow service of his choice.

I also know that in the U.P. on Superior the Coast Guard will come out and tow you as there is not commercial service in that area, at least where I have been.

Lake Erie, may not have tow services available and that is why the Coast Guard will tow you.

Something to check into.
 

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I've seen the same experience as boatnfish - on Saginaw Bay and St. Clair, if you aren't in danger, they may not come and tow you. They will tell you to call a commercial tow. My friend had to get service earlier this year since we were unable to rescue his boat ourselves (stuck in real shallow water) and prices ranged from ~$500 to $1,000 from the St. Clair tow/recovery services (from 9 Mile area and Clinton River area). I don't remember which service he ended up with by name.

I think the least I've heard for a short tow is ~$350 which is probably why I had a tuna boat captain pay me $100 a few years ago to tow him from the Sny back into Harley (I wouldn't have taken money from you fellow anglers - well, maybe enough for a cheeseburger if you had the winning weight for an FLW in the livewell...).

I know another angler who was towed in by Canadian Coast Guard on Erie because of boat problems, so I guess it appears to depend on the day and the location, but don't count on the free tow from a Coast Guard or Sherriff.

The best thing is to have friends, be safe, keep the important stuff tight and maintained, and have multiple means of communication and navigation.
 

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you can also go to www.boatus.com and buy towing insurance from them. i have unlimited towing for all the great lakes for 150.00 a year. towboat u.s. is all around the great lakes and on st clair. they moniter channel 16 or you can call direct to them by cell phone. i also have boat insurance and trailering club with boat u.s. my fuel pump went out of my truck coming back to columbus from the last detroit river tournament and boat us. payed to have my truck towed to my house and would have had my boat towed also if i had not got a friend to come get it. i have a 518 ranger with all this coverage(this includes full coverage/replacement) for less than 550.00 a year. you can also take a online saftey course thru boat us. and get 10% discount on your coverage if you pass with 80% or better( you can take this over and over to get 100%)
 

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I dont know how many people here actually clicked the link I provided but here is the core of the message from Michigan Marine Salvage (a board sponsor):

John,

It is not $59 per Tow, It is $59 plus a 1 time membership fee of $10, for a Total of $69 for a whole year!!!!

$69 for 1 year....this is an unbelievable price, and you won't find anything better on Lake St. Clair, I guarantee that!!!!!

By the way, you can start your season when you want to. Let's say you were gonna splash your boat May 15, well: when you call to buy your membership, you just tell us that you want it to start May 15th. So then your Towing Membership would be from May 15, 2003 to May 15, 2004....

You dont have to wait to purchase. Vessel Assist is a great Towing Assurance, especially if you only pay $69 for unlimited for 1 year!!!

Just remember to call us directly for the awesome deal, if you call the 800 number, they will charge you regular price. Our # is 586-468-2430

Amy

It says it will last for one calander year....so you will be covered all year next year (up to the date you call) if you call now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I called the coast guard at the Amherstburg station & he said they will tow you no charge.I don't know if this is Canadian only or for both US & Canadian.Sets my mind more at ease.Also he said get that vhf radio.They have had emergency calls before & the cell phone goes dead & they can't find the people in need.The vhf has a direct line I think star 16.When you are talking anybody on that line will hear & can assist.Actually that just happened on Erie with a commercial fishing boat,the Captain I guess had a heart attack & on channel 16 a doctor with some divers that were working on gas wells heard the call & saved his life.Coast guard came a little bit later & choppered him away.Have to get one.
 

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Thanks a ton Dave for easing these guys mind, as I was actually in the Coast Guard and some still had the mindset to question my post........ Maybe they will listen to you!!!!

Nick Neves
 
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QUOTE(CATCHEM @ Sep 11 2003, 12:49 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Thanks a ton Dave for easing these guys mind, as I was actually in the Coast Guard and some still had the mindset to question my post........ Maybe they will listen to you!!!!

Nick Neves
 

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The best on the water in my experience is Boat U.S. 800-395-2628I have both their tow ins. and trailering ins.

Here is a link to their site: http://boatus.com/towing/?source=google_tow_branded they have boats next to the Crocker landing.
I used their service when a water impellar went out. ( They are Great ).

Coast Guard 1-800-321-4400
 
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