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Crowley Tugs Return Home to Provide Ship Assist and Escort Services in Oakland, Calif.

(Oakland, Calif; May 7, 2004) – Crowley Marine Services tugs, once a fixture in San Francisco Bay from the early 1900s to 1996, have returned home. Earlier this week Crowley re-launched its ship assist and escort service in the Port of Oakland with two high horsepower tugs – the Tioga (Z drive – 4400 horsepower) and the Sea Robin (twin screw – 5000 horsepower).

The company’s Oakland operation is located at the 9th Avenue terminal. From there, Crowley is now providing traditional ship assist services to carriers, typically container shipping companies, as they enter and leave the port and its surrounding areas.

Crowley is no stranger to the San Francisco Bay area. The company was founded there in 1892 and provided ship assist services from the early 1900s until 1996 with its venerable red stack fleet of tugs. In addition, Crowleys corporate headquarters remains in downtown Oakland.

“Crowley Maritime Corporation has had roots in San Francisco since it was founded there 112 years ago,” said Tom Crowley Jr., Chairman, President and CEO. “It is only fitting that we bring our ship assist operations back to this port where it all started. Our customers have been asking us to bring our high level of service back to the Bay Area; we listened and are excited to be able once again to provide them with services.”

“In today’s competitive ship assist market, it is important for us to be able to provide full ship assist coverage to our customers in all of the West Coast ports in which they call,” said Rob Grune, vice president and general manager, ship assist and escort services. “Our re-entry into Oakland will enable us to do that.”

“All of us here at Crowley are looking forward to working with the Bay Area maritime community in providing high quality, reliable, safe ship assist services,” said Todd Busch, director, ship assist and escort services.

Returning to Oakland would not have been possible without the support of the company’s operating unions, the International Organization of Masters, Mates and Pilots (MMP) and the Inlandboatman’s Union of the Pacific (IBU). Working with these unions has enabled the company to ensure that that the high level of service offered in its other ports will be provided in Oakland as well.

Crowley owns and operates one of the most advanced fleets of ship assist and escort tugs in the world. Harbor towing services in Oakland, San Diego and Los Angeles, Calif., as well as Seattle and Tacoma, Wash., include safely escorting and docking tankers, container ships and other vessels as they enter and depart from the harbors. Tugs in Valdez, Alaska, and North Puget Sound assist large tankers and provide both tethered and untethered escort services. Crowley tugs based in these areas are outfitted for firefighting services, and barges based in Valdez also provide oil spill response services.

Oakland-based Crowley Maritime Corp., founded in 1892, is primarily a family- and employee-owned company engaged in worldwide logistics, liner services , contract towing and transportation, energy support services, ship assist and escort services, vessel management and petroleum and chemical marine transport . Additional information about Crowley, its subsidiaries and business units may be found on the Internet at

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