TUGMEN STAGE PROTEST IN BOSTON

TUGMEN STAGE PROTEST IN BOSTON

Some 50 members of a striking tugboat union and sympathizers marched on a Coast Guard Marine Safety Office Friday to protest alleged violations of vessel manning.

Commander Philip Chase said his office has investigated six complaints of alleged undermanning on tugs formerly crewed by members of Local 333 of the International Longshoremen's Association. The six cases since Feb. 22 have been essentially unfounded, but each allegation will be dealt with seriously, he said.There have been no accidents or groundings in Boston by coastal tugs affected by the strike, but a Bouchard Co. barge en route to a Sprague Fuel terminal in Providence, R.I., ran aground in the Providence River last Wednesday.

Cmdr. Larry Doyle of the Providence Marine Safety Office said an initial investigation showed that the Bouchard tug captain was operating within the bounds of his license. But he added that the cause of the grounding is being sought.