by Ethan Maass
Sea Tow Services International, Inc., the nation’s leading on-water assistance provider, is happy to announce that Capt. Ethan Maass will celebrate his 10-year anniversary as owner of Sea Tow South Shore on May 30, 2014. Capt. Maass, whose operation won the 2011 Sea Tow Franchise of the Year Award, is dedicated to serving boaters in need on the water in his area of responsibility, which runs from Cohasset to Sandwich, Mass., including Cape Cod Bay and parts of Massachusetts Bay.
The Sea Tow Osprey is one of our local fast-response towboats ready to assist boaters on the water
Sea Tow South Shore is one of the oldest established locations in the Sea Tow Services International network, which celebrated its 30th anniversary last year.
'Capt. Maass has been a great asset to Sea Tow over the past decade and we look forward to his being part of our network for many years to come,' said Sea Tow Founder and CEO Capt. Joe Frohnhoefer. 'In addition to helping boaters through his work, he has been very active in serving his local community.'
'I feel very strongly about being part of the community and giving back,' said Maass, 38, who holds a U.S. Coast Guard Master’s License (with assistance towing and sailing endorsements). 'I’ve always had a response mentality. In high school I volunteered for the local ambulance service, and then I enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard. I love what I do.'
Capt. Maass became owner of Sea Tow South Shore on May 30, 2004. 'I remember my very first tow, because I picked up my first Sea Tow boat in Boston, about 30 miles north of here, ran down to my new area and towed a boat into Plymouth,' he said. 'It’s statistically interesting that my first year was the busiest with 225 tows. I did every one of those tows and didn’t take a day off for 160 days. Then I hired my first captain and he still works for me.'
Headquartered in Green Harbor, Mass., Sea Tow South Shore currently employs four U.S. Coast Guard-licensed Captains on a part-time basis. The franchise’s fleet includes a 26-foot Twin Vee and 24-foot Boston Whaler, both powered by twin 150-hp outboards, and a 25-foot Luhrs with twin Yanmar diesels. All three boats are kept in the water for quick response throughout the area.
Capt. Maass says the conditions in his territory can vary dramatically—a typical day can include flat-calm conditions but might quickly deteriorate to two- to three-foot waves and chop. Being ready for the changing conditions is one of the business’ many challenges that he enjoys. The busiest period is from July 4th through the fall fishing season.
'One memorable job was in November 2012 with a runaway 17-foot Boston Whaler that had ejected its passengers,' Capt. Maass continued. 'It was speeding around in circles with no one at the wheel. I was able to stop it by trailing my tow line in the water and circling the boat, fouling its propeller.'
For his efforts, Capt. Maass was awarded the Conference of Professional Operators for Response Towing (C-PORT) Distinguished Service Award in Recognition for Extraordinary Assistance in January 2013.
Although Capt. Maass had never stopped a boat using the tow-line technique before, he had learned about the idea through the Sea Tow franchise network. 'I had previously talked to other Sea Tow captains about how they had stopped runaway boats,' Capt. Maass said. 'That’s the beauty of this network. I had that collective knowledge in my head so I wasn’t at a loss when I approached the situation. I knew what to try and it worked, and I love that we can share knowledge on the phone, at our Annual Conferences and online.'
For more information about Sea Tow South Shore, please call 781-834-5242 or visit the website.