Foss Launch and Tug Company
The story of the Foss Launch and Tug Company began in 1889, when Thea Foss, an immigrant living near the Puget Sound in Washington, decided to make a few dollars by renting row boats out to duck hunters and picnickers while her husband was attempting to farm the valley. Arthur Foss soon realized that his wife's enterprise was much more profitable than his own toils in the field. Soon they grew to an operation of about 200 small boats, and learning repair tactics on these, he grew ambitious to establish a larger operation. They refurbished their first power vessel by repairing the hull and steam engine of a ship, the St. Patrick, which had run aground in the tides of the sound.
The company grew and grew until it was a primary ship-designer for the burgeoning Northwest logging companies who were transferring raw lumber down the West coast and to inland railroads. Steadily growing, the Foss family was able to buy a Seattle based tug-company following WWI, which has grown into the single largest tug firm in the Puget Sound region. The company today employs more than a thousand people on and offshore in a range of services and industries. Today the operation emphasizes its ability to offer tug and barge services to a wide range of industries such as bridge and cable implementation. The company also serves government contracts with its ability to provide sea-level transport of nearly anything. Recently the Department of Defense contracted Foss Launch and Tug Co. to transport prefabricated missile silos to remote strategic sites in the harsh environments of Alaska. They were also contracted by a large energy provider to transport and set up prefabricated power plant structures to remote locations in Mexico with little existing infrastructure. Other notable projects include extensive work and transport in the construction of the Carniquez Bridge in the San Francisco Bay, as well as efforts towards the construction of Tacoma Narrows and Hood Canal bridges in the Puget Sound. The company also offers full service to all its vessels to ensure fast and effective turnover from repair to full use again in relatively little time.
The work performed by Foss Launch and Tug Co, which employs a large fleet of serviceable and established tugs and barges, requires a great deal of repair to these vessels. These repairs can occasionally occur in dangerous and safety-sensitive areas. Some of these areas are such that exposure to potentially dangerous materials can occur. One of the materials commonly associated with the mechanization of older ships is asbestos. It is important to take precautions when dealing in these areas, which include pipe fittings, boiler rooms, as well as electrical, floor, and ceiling installations.
If you may have been exposed, or think you may have, it is paramount to speak with your doctor about any such exposures so you can be tested. Early detection is key to understanding options about potentially life-threatening health complications caused by asbestos exposure. Complications can take years to develop, so act sooner than later if you may be at risk.
Last modified: December 28, 2010.