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Crowley’s Tug Guard and Crew Help Put Out House Fire on Vashon Island

(Seattle; Sept. 7 2006) – Crowley Maritime Corporation’s tugboat Guard and her crew helped the local fire department put out a house fire early yesterday morning on Vashon Island.

Matt Maxwell, the mate on watch on the Guard, noticed the house on fire as the tug was transiting from Seattle to Tacoma for a routine ship assist job. He called Crowley’s port captain, Scott Craig, who was then able to contact the fire department captain on scene and offer assistance. Because of the rural make up of the island, the fire department was unable to position engines as close as they would have liked and therefore welcomed Crowley’s assistance from the water.

The Guard, which is a member of Crowley’s marine services fleet pumped approximately 6,000 gallons per minute through one of her monitors onto the blaze, which had spread to neighboring trees and was threatening an additional home nearby. Because of the tugs advanced fire fighting capabilities, the fire was extinguished in only 15 minutes allowing the fire department to move in closer for additional containment.

Following the short episode, the Guard continued to its destination where it met its scheduled vessel in need of harbor assist on time. The Guard is one of three Crowley tugs equipped with fire fighting capabilities in the Seattle/Tacoma area. These tugs have two pumps capable of spraying a total of 13,600 gallons of water per minute a distance of about 400 feet making them suitable for extinguishing fires that may break out aboard the tankers that they are assigned to escort through Puget Sound.

The crew of the Guard was also congratulated by the Seattle Fire Department in early August for assistance they provided to a similar scene in July at the NOAA pier in Lake Union, Wash. In that situation, the Guard along with sister tug Protector were dispatched to pull the USNS Assertive away from the pier while the fire department extinguished a spreading fire.

As the Guard pulled the vessel away from the pier, the Protector was on stand-by duty outside Chittenden Locks, in the event another pier fire occurred.

Oakland-based Crowley Maritime Corporation, founded in 1892, is primarily a family and employee-owned company that provides diversified transportation and logistics services in domestic and international markets by means of four operating lines of business: liner services, logistics services, petroleum services and marine services. Other services provided within these business lines include contract towing and transportation; ship assist and escort; energy support; salvage and emergency response; vessel management, and petroleum and chemical transportation, distribution and sales. Additional information about Crowley its subsidiaries and business units may be found on the Internet at

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