Vessel Assist renamed as TowBoatU.S. on West Coast

SAN DIEGO — Same boat. New name. BoatU.S. announced it will continue to operate its water towing service on the West Coast but under a new moniker. The national boating organization officially renamed its Vessel Assist brand to TowBoatU.S. during a press event in San Diego on June 16.

According to BoatU.S., the name shift streamlines its national brand with the former West Coast-based towing fleet. The transition from Vessel Assist to TowBoatU..S should be completed by early 2016.

“Other than a new name on the side of the towboat, BoatU..S members and boaters needing assistance 24 hours a day will continue to get the same great, helpful and professional service from our local captains.” BoatU.S. President Margaret Podlich said. “There are no pricing changes for any of our annual on water towing plans.”

Recreational boaters in five West Coast states and one Canadian province will receive the same branded towing services as their counterparts east of the Rockies. All red boats under the former Vessel Assist brand in California, Arizona, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia, Canada, will now sail under the TowBoatU.S. banner.

TowBoatU.S. will continue to offer its 600 towing vessels at 300 West Coast locations to BoatU.S.’s members for service requests, such as jump starts, fuel drop-offs and soft undergroundings. 

“Since our purchase of the Vessel Assist fleet, BoatU.S. members have seamlessly been able to use either towing fleet for any boat they own, rent or charter anywhere in the U.S.,” BoatU.S. Vice President of Towing Services Adam Wheeler said. “We will continue to offer Unlimited Freshwater Annual Towing Service Plans for $72 and Unlimited Saltwater Annual Towing Service Plans for $158 – both include BoatU.S. membership.”

BoatU.S., which acquired Vessel Assist in 2003, responds to more than 70,000 boater assistance requests per year. West Coast boaters are able to stay in touch with dispatchers in Orange County thanks to the high elevation of its VHF radio towers. The 24-hour regional dispatch center is in Costa Mesa and connected to radio towers located within Southern California’s coastal mountain range.

Boaters seeking towing assistance can contact TowBoatU.S. by phone at 800-391-4869, VHF Radio, the BoatU.S. mobile application, SPOT satellite messenger or DeLorme inReach’s two-way satellite messenger.

More than 500,000 people belong to BoatU.S., a national organization offering insurance, seaside assistance, safety instruction and legislative advocacy to recreational boaters.

Visit for more information about TowBoatU.S.

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