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Old 23-11-2007, 11:24   #1
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Ship Hits Ice Off Antarctica

From the New York Times, comes word of a stricken cruise ship off Antarctica:

~ ~ ~

"154 Rescued After Antarctic Cruise Ship Hits Ice


"European Pressphoto Agency
"An aerial view of the cruiseship Explorer, which struck an iceberg in the Antarctic Ocean and began to sink.




"By GRAHAM BOWLEY

"Published: November 24, 2007

"A small cruise ship, the Explorer, was listing dangerously in Antarctic waters today after it struck ice in the Bransfield Strait off King George Island, although all 154 passengers and crew members had been rescued and were being taken to safety, the cruise operator and coast guards said."

For the full NYT account, go to:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/24/wo...hp&oref=slogin

In an account running on Associated Press, I'm struck by the following passages:

"The ship ran into some ice. It was submerged ice and the result was a hole about the size of a fist in the side of the hull so it began taking on water ... but quite slowly, . . . said Susan Hayes of G.A.P. Adventures of Toronto, which owns the stricken vessel." Further down in the article, she states "There is a possibility we may lose the ship." (emphasis added)

Assuming for the moment that the AP account is correct, does anyone here think they would abandon their vessel and expect it to sink from a hole the size of a fist? Especially given that the vessel in this accident has pumps aboard that are limiting the taking on of water to a slow rate.

Here's a link to the AP article:

Excite News - Stricken Ship Evacuated Off Antarctica

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Old 23-11-2007, 11:50   #2
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A hole the size of a fist? This is a ship not a yacht...their pumps should have easily handled that. Why could they not jam something into the hole to slow down the leak? It's not unrealistic to do something like that on a ship....even with water shooting out a few meters below the waterline.

My guess is their crew never got any DC (Damage Control) training which is typical of so many foreign flagged, flag of convenience countries. Monrovia is this case. If you ever see a Panamanian, Honduran, Liberian or a Monrovian flag on the transom...run for the hills. Flag of convenience countries have little to no safety standards for their vessels. They just issue the registry documentation so they can make some money. I would not sail on any cruise line who registers their ships in any of these countries. It's a real shame the general public does not know this and is willing to jump aboard any ship with a pretty white paint job.
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Old 23-11-2007, 11:59   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David M View Post
A hole the size of a fist? This is a ship not a yacht... their pumps should have easily handled that. Why could they not jam something into the hole to slow down the leak? It's not unrealistic to do something like that on a ship....even with water shooting out a few meters below the waterline.
Having spent some time onboard ships and in the damage control simulators it isn't always easy and often impossible to get to the hole causing the flooding. If you've spent anytime under the deckplates in the engine room of a ship you'll soon realize there's plenty of places you can hole that you'll never be able to reach to do damage control. Combine that with the fact that the water is probably only a degree or two above freezing you'd have less than minutes to affect a repair before having to be spelled off. I doubt very much they had anything other than immersion suits to protect themselves from hypothermia why trying to affect a repair. Their best chance would be, if equipment was available, to put a diver over the side with a big wooden plug!
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Old 23-11-2007, 12:45   #4
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Yes I have spent plenty of time on ships. And if there is a will there is a way. It's all in the attitude and the training. A hole the size of a fist may sink a yacht in a few minutes but not a ship. There is still plenty of reserve buoyancy and volume left in a compartment to keep the ship upright that would give a crew enough time to effect at least a partial repair. So what if the water is cold...deal with it. It's better than abandoning a vessel before even attempting a repair. This still does not address the dewatering issue. A hole the size of a fist is NOT such a major problem that should lead to the abandonment of a ship. Even if the compartment does eventually fill up to the level of the waterline, a properly designed and maintained ship should be able to remain upright. In naval architecture, ships are partially rated by how many compartments can flood before they become unrealistically unstable. A ship that size probably has at least 5 watertight compartments of which at least one could flood and not cause the metacentric height to go negative with a little rolling. One or more people screwed up, either through poor maintenance or poor training or both.
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Old 23-11-2007, 13:01   #5
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Cut and copied from another board:

Quote:
The "Explorer" had remarks in their classing, among them remarks that the watertight doors down below didn't work and had to be delt with within a cetain date, and another remark was about equipment that had to do with the lifeboats that didn't work according to specs.
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Old 23-11-2007, 13:02   #6
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Makes sense....sounds like they flooded more than one W/T compartment. A maintenance issue from the standpoint of the W/T doors and the dewatering pumps. You kind of get what you pay for with respect to safety on these flag of convenience ships.
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Old 23-11-2007, 13:06   #7
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Passengers rescued from Canadian-owned ship in Antarctic



CANOE -- CNEWS - World: Ice tears through Antarctic cruise ship

Air temp -5C and water temp -1C. I'd guestimate that you'd have >60 seconds in that temp water to try to affect a repair before you'd loose all sensation in your hands. IIRC the water temp in the simulators was about 5-10C and we could only work for 5 mins. before having to be spelled off to thaw out. Granted a simulator isn't like being on a sinking ship trying to save your's and everyone elses life. Yup somebody screwed up just glad I wasn't onboard!
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Old 23-11-2007, 13:09   #8
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Yeah, you get numb pretty fast...but the adrenaline should help that!
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Old 23-11-2007, 17:15   #9
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Bring on global warming! Mind you, a hole the size of a fist wouldn't sink my boat.
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Old 23-11-2007, 17:17   #10
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I hope she sinks.
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Old 23-11-2007, 17:28   #11
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I hope she sinks.
I hope not.

All that fuel oil in the water and the loose plastic and pieces floating around polluting our last frontier.

Somebody ougth to outlaw them Disney Land cruises and let the wild be just that.
Build yer own ice-worthy sailboat and explore nature, otherwise go to Las Vegas or watch TV....Can't have it both ways.
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Old 23-11-2007, 23:21   #12
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Ice tears through Antartic ship
There's one of those sensational headline grabing pieces of crap story headings again. Sheeesh, hole the size of a fist.
What I don't understand is two points. Why could pumps not keep up with a hole that size. I mean, Kainui has done better with a bucket :-)
And why the heck did a vessel of that size sink so fast when she only had a fist size hole.
Actually three points. Why on earth did they abandon ship so soon. They had all entered the life boats when the ship had only a slight list. My thoughts would be that is would be safer to remain onboard as long as possible when you are in dangerousely icy waters like that. Hmmmm, I could start a conspiracy theory here couldn't I.
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Old 23-11-2007, 23:23   #13
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As others have said, the pumps on that size ship would keep up EASILY with a fist sized hole. I would expect it was a much bigger hole (or holes)
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Old 24-11-2007, 02:58   #14
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Old 24-11-2007, 03:53   #15
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She's gone down!

CANOE -- CNEWS - World: Cruise ship sinks off Antarctica
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