NYC has its inaccessible places, which can be accessed if you really want. It also has these transients, huge ones that that steal in and out at all hours, all days and seasons.
FOR the last six summers I have been operating a taxi along New York’s waterways. It is not the yellow ferry that commuters ride around Lower Manhattan, but a small rowboat that I made from plywood. Instead of a diesel engine, I use the tidal currents in the harbor to propel my craft.
On each trip I take one or two passengers, often strangers who have found me online and requested a ride. We visit places around New York that most people have never heard of: Swinburne Island or the ship graveyard in Coney Island Creek. Some are wild and overgrown, places where herons nest along deserted creeks. Others are industrial wastelands, canals where the oil sludge and debris are so thick that my little boat has trouble maneuvering. Most of them are within a few miles of Times Square.
But no matter how close we are to the city, it is a different world out in the boat…
photo by cxg231
Puget Sound Maritime – Trawler Royal Enterprise Burns on Lake Union
by Tim Flanagan »
Update: Our news partner The Seattle Times reports that no one was aboard the boat, and there were no injuries. Firefighters confined the fire to the deck level, and put it out in little more than an hour.
There was a fire aboard the 125-foot commercial fishing vessel Royal Enterprise tonight that saw a huge Seattle Fire Department response. Beginning at 7:43 p.m. more than two dozen SFD units plus fire and police boats were sent to the scene at 1341 Northlake Way. Tipster Joe told us at 8:17 p.m. that the fire was out and was knocked down quickly.
Tracking a Trail of Oil Droplets: The holocam is lowered into the Gulf of Mexico, where data indicated the Deepwater Horizon subsurface oil plume is located. It will image and measure oil droplets that make up the plume. (Photo courtesy of Cabell Davis, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)
Jack Tar Magazine: Aboard NOAA R/V Gloria Michelle
Large-Scale Legos: BrickExpo 2010
If you were lucky enough to be in Cincinnati last weekend, you could have seen some amazing Lego creations at the 2010 BrickExpo held at the Clemont County Fairgrounds. Inside a 6,000-square-foot building were many large-scale Lego creations by builders from all over the country.
Aside from incredibly detailed models of everything from planes, trains, and automobiles to a Gothic cathedral, one of the highlights of the show was a Lego creation of Captain “Sully” Sullenberger’s finest hour, now known as “The Miracle on the Hudson.” The impressive installation featured ships and Coast Guard helicopters coming to the aid of US Airways Flight 1549 after Sully was able to safely land the plane in the river last January.
In Case You Missed It: gCaptain and the Wikipedia Blacklist – An Update
by John Konrad
Well I thought we where doing a good thing over the years by encouraging people to help wikipedia improve their maritime posts… but it seems that we (both myself and a number of well intended readers) crossed the line along the way and linked to gCaptain too many times. Their editors thought we where not real mariners but spammers…
So they blacklisted us.
I can’t plead 100% innocence (I personally have linked to gCaptain post I thought where meaningful on wikipedia), and I can sympathize with their problem (we get hit with a ton of spam at gCaptain and sometimes accidentally ban a “good apple”) I only wish they had visited our contact page to warn us. But they didn’t… »
Frustrated with the pirates, a senior government official told ABC News, “It’s pretty sad when a horse country socialite has more sway in Somalia than the whole U.S. government.”
American Shipbuilders Must Hate Money
Of the $787 billion in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, only $132,000 was spent on actual shipbuilding – all of it in a contract to Horizon Shipbuilding of Alabama.
There was $98 million spent on capital improvements to infrastructure of shipyards issued by the Maritime Administration (see full list here), but not on actual ships.
Shipbuilding is critical to any global economy, indeed it is one of the most interesting aspects of the global economy today. For example, it isn’t a coincidence that South Korea somehow avoided recession in 2009, and China was barely hit by the global downturn while both countries lead the world in shipbuilding. Vietnam has the worlds fourth largest shipbuilding industry by market share and has the fastest growing economy in the world. I think it is interesting Japan, with the worlds third largest shipbuilding industry, is the only country among the 4 mentioned that took a major hit with the latest global recession – although shipbuilding is a very small piece of the overall Japanese economy today, unlike the other three nations.
Baltimore: Firefighters Investigate Fire on Coast Guard Ship in Curtis Bay
Firefighters continue to investigate the cause of a Tuesday night fire involving a 270-foot long Coast Guard boat. Possible electrical fire may have started near the engine room.
Lt. Cliff Kooser, spokesman with the Anne Arundel County fire department, said about 47 firefighters were called at 10:32 p.m. to a dry dock in the Curtis Bay Coast Guard Yard, where smoke coming from the hull of the ship.
Kooser said the firefighters had to climb up four stories to get inside the boat that was in the dry dock and then travel down three floors to the third level of the main deck. The fire is believed to have been started by an electrical fire in an area near the engine room, Kooser said.
Jack20707 at 10:35 PM September 15, 2010 Left the following comment:
Who writes these things? A vessel 270 feet long is not a boat. If it is Coast Guard vessel it is a cutter. The main deck does not have three levels, it has one level. The other levels are different decks. This is not difficult, it is very basic information.
via Baltimore Sun
Bigfoot was a 1997 ideas competition to design a football stadium at Santa Monica State beach in order to entice football teams back to LA which has been deserted by two football teams over the previous two years. We proposed a floating football stadium, a ship, which bypasses the problems of siting the stadium and addresses the increasing mobility of football teams, if the team is sold the football stadium can go with them.
Boat Featured in “Deadliest Catch” Burns in Overnight Fire
KUCB News 2010-09-15 – Early Sunday morning, the fishing vessel Arctic Dawn caught fire while moored in Seattle. As of today, there are still no reports regarding the full extent of the damage.
Nearly 100 Seattle firefighters spent the early hours of the morning grappling with a three-alarm fire burning on The Arctic Dawn, a 97-foot fishing vessel featured in early episodes of Deadliest Catch.
The Geeky Swedes over at My Ballard blog have the full story on the fire and. the challenges responders face when fighting a blaze on a ship. The ship was anchored on the Queen Anne side of the Ship Canal. It’s still not clear what caused the fire, and fortunately nobody was injured.
Bowsprite: buoys move & sh!t happens
A Patchogue captain returning from Boston squeezed through Shinnecock Inlet, and was making good speed when he suddenly ran hard aground in Moriches Bay.
“I don’t understand! I’m in the channel!” said he, as he pulled out his paper charts and peered at his GPS. And—as real life is stranger than fiction—while he was there, a Coast Guard boat came from behind him, picked up the channel buoy, and dropped it about fifty yards east of where he stood, and disappeared.
“Ah, ” he said as he slowly listed 45° to one side, “NOW I’m out of the channel.”
Dead Whale Found on Cargo Ship at Port of Oakland
OAKLAND — A whale found on the bow of a container ship docked at the Port of Oakland had been dead for days, if not longer, by the time its death was reported to authorities Thursday morning, said marine biologist Joe Cordaro, of the National Marine Fisheries Service in Long Beach.
Cordaro said his agency had yet to determine when or where the vessel ran into the animal, or whether those aboard the Northern Vitality realized what had happened before the ship arrived in Oakland.
“Sometimes these ships are so big they don’t even know that they’ve hit one until they come into port,” he said.
Dredger Crew Kidnapped in Cameroon
16 Sep 2010 – Two crew members of the trailing suction hopper dredger Amerigo Vespucci were kidnapped by an armed gang as the vessel worked in the Cameroon port of Douala on Sunday night.
Seven raiders armed with rocket launchers reportedly attacked the vessel, seizing a Croatian engineer and a Filipino deck hand before retreating by sea. The vessel, belonging to Belgian dredging and marine contracting giant Jan De Nul Group, returned safely to harbour following the attack, in which no one was injured. Jan De Nul has not mentioned if a ransom demand has been received. The company has established a crisis team, informed all concerned parties, and promised to do everything to assure the safety of the crew.
Information Dissemination: The American Princess
No, It’s Not Another Authentic-to-the-Last-Detail Art Blecko Love Boat…
Back in November of 2008 the buzz of piracy took off when pirates seized the super tanker MV Sirius Star – which at the time marked the largest ship Somali pirates had hijacked. It was a high profile action, and with it came high profile news reporting. Among the news reports was an interesting detail regarding a Virginia woman who was in contact with Somali pirates regarding the release of the MV Sirius Star in late November of 2008, as well as some other unsuccessful negotiating for the release of the MV Faina (which was carrying T-72 tanks if you recall).
September 15, 2010 – An American businesswoman with connections to U.S. intelligence and the military has been talking with the Somali pirates who have commandeered the Saudi oil tanker Sirius Star, trying to get the ship released, ABC News has confirmed.
First reported by Military.com, the pirates, who have halted all talks with the ship’s owners, are talking to a woman named Michele Lynn Ballarin, instead.
Michele Lynn Ballarin is no ordinary ‘horse country socialite,’ she also owns Select Armor, Inc., a private security firm with a questionable record. She also wasn’t an unknown in Somalia in 2008, as only two years earlier her firm had been centric to a public discussion regarding the role of private security firms working around the UN to overthrow the Islamic Courts and stand up the TFG. Why does this matter?
(special thanks to the propeller head over at Jizzmodo that forwarded this to me)
James Cameron Heads For Mariana Trench to Film Avatar Sequel and Capture X Prize Simultaneously
Director James Cameron is building a sub that can plunge 36,000 feet beneath the surface of the ocean. If he can pull it off, he could win a $10 million X Prize and shoot footage for an “Avatar” sequel simultaneously.
The Daily Mail first reported the story, saying the sub would be made of composite materials and powered by electric motors. It would have to survive the immense pressures experienced at seven miles below the surface of the ocean, where Cameron hopes to shoot 3-D footage to incorporate into the second Avatar film.
The minelayer Ruotsinsalmi, launched in Turku in 1940, was responsible for putting down a significant number of the Finnish mines off Cape Juminda. Photo: SA-KUVA
Juminda, 28.8.1941: To the Memory of the Drowned – All 12,000 of Them
The seabed in the Gulf of Finland between KallbÃ¥dagrund and Cape Juminda is one enormous graveyard
Officer Cadet Fyodor Paramonovich Yeryomenko stood on the deck of the Soviet Baltic Fleet destroyer Volodarski and peered out to sea. It was largely a vain exercise, since the Gulf of Finland was pitch-black in the dark August night. It was Thursday August 28th, 1941. The time was approaching 23.00, and Yeryomenko was counting down the minutes until the end of his watch.
The Orfey-class destroyer Volodarski, launched in 1914 in St. Petersburg as the Pobiditel, had left the Estonian capital Tallinn just after sunset, at the tail end of a long flotilla of Soviet troopships, merchantmen, and naval escorts heading towards Leningrad and safety. Before very long, the Volodarski would be level with Cape Juminda, a headland sticking out from the Estonian coast, some ten nautical miles to the south. The ship was making 14 knots and heading east-north-east towards the island of Suursaari and Russian waters.
Somewhere ahead of the Volodarski were the minesweepers. Their wires, sweeps, and devices designed to cut the anchor-cables of the horned contact-mines were supposed to bring the mines to the surface, where they could be blown up – or at least where it would be easier to spot them and avoid them. But first you had to see them. And try as he might, the 18-year-old cadet could see nothing but inky-black water…
Looking a Little Green – EV Advocates Offer Goodbye Gift for Ousted BP CEO
Eco-friendly provocateurs want to help ousted BP CEO Tony Hayward get his life back with a little gift to accompany his golden parachute: an electric car.
“Now that you’ve got more time on your hands, we’re offering you the chance to truly move beyond petroleum by driving an electric car and encouraging the world to do the same,” the card reads. “To make it easy for you, we’ve picked out a brand new electric car and paid the deposit… You’ll never have to make a trip to a gas station again!”
MiniNation Expands its Mobile Social Network with Pirate Nation on iPhone
Japanese powerhouse DeNA, creator of the iPhone social network MiniNation, has expanded it with a collection of social and casual applications. Pirate Nation, released at the end of last month, is a free-to-play title on the iPhone network that takes users out to the high seas as pirates.
It’s a simple game of battles and collection with several amusing, twitch-based mini-games. Players can also customize their ships — to a limited degree.
In Pirate Nation, you set sail to the seven seas and seek out treasure. Becoming the top pirate in the process isn’t a bad either. You start out with a torn-up bucket of a ship and are immediately off and sailing. Sailing the ocean is simple, as you are only given one direction to at a time. Each tap in this direction takes the you to a new patch of water…
image source: M/S Stella Polaris, Clipper Line
The MS STELLA POLARIS: The Most Famous Cruise Ship of All Time
By Michael Grace at CrusieLineHistory.com – The ship was considered one of the most elegant and exclusive devoted to cruising. She sailed to the Mediterranean, North Cape, Caribbean and Around The World. She had no rivals.
On the World Cruise there was more than one crew member for every passenger. The time was elegant and this is great glimpse into cruise and social history. She was owned by Bergen Line from Norway during the first part of her career, and resembled a royal yacht, with her clipper bow, bow sprit, well deck and lavish accommodations for just 200 passengers.
She was built by Gotaverken in Goteborg in 1925-26, measured 5.020 GRT and went into service in early 1927. Stella Polaris is considered one of the first “real” cruise ships in the history of cruising, being not only one of the first full-time cruise ships, but also one of the first purpose built cruise ships. For the most part, until the 1950s passenger ships were a means of transportation, and consequently, most cruise ships were passenger liners that were sent off cruising in “weak” periods, e.g. winter on the North Atlantic when passenger numbers were low.
NASSCO Launches 700-foot Cargo Ship into San Diego Bay
After being whacked a couple times with a Champagne bottle, the cavernous cargo ship Washington Chambers slipped down the ways at General Dynamics NASSCO this morning (Sept 11, 2010) and splashed into San Diego Bay before 3,000 cheering spectators.
The 700-foot ship, which will deliver ammunition, fuel, food and supplies to the Navy, was christened at 10:50 a.m. and sent into the bay seconds later, where chubby tugboats caught the vessel and guided it to a nearby pier for pre-delivery work.
“It was a huge ship, just huge,” said Frank Ogwaro, 18, of San Diego. “I couldn’t believe a mass of steel could float on water. It’s an amazing engineering feat.”
NOAA Attempts to Clean Up Oil Spill Research Efforts
NATURE.com – Is there an extensive oil plume in the Gulf of Mexico or no oil plume? Are oil-eating bacteria making quick work of the spill or chomping slowly? In the nearly two months since BP capped the well and stopped the flow, conflicting reports have surfaced about the amount of lingering oil.
Now, in an attempt to clear up some of the murkiness–as well as its own mixed reviews on the issue– NOAA is organizing a long-term monitoring effort in the Gulf.
“One of the most important things we are doing now is getting information from research institutions to better understand what is happening in the sediment and on the seafloor,” NOAA administrator Jane Lubchenco said in a press briefing today.
Obama Administration to Require Abandoned Oil and Gas Wells Plugged & Idle Platforms Dismantled in Gulf of Mexico
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration said Wednesday it will require oil and gas companies operating in the Gulf of Mexico to plug nearly 3,500 nonproducing wells and dismantle about 650 production platforms that are no longer used.
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said a formal notice to leaseholders should make energy production in the Gulf safer and prevent potentially catastrophic leaks at wells that in some cases have been abandoned for decades.
Prison Ship Records from 19th Century Published
A picture of life on board Britain’s 19th Century prison ships has emerged with the publication online of details of some of the 200,000 inmates.
BBC News – The records outline the disease-ridden conditions on the “prison hulks”, created to ease overcrowding elsewhere. The prisoners included eight-year-old Francis Creed, who was jailed for seven years on HMS Bellerophon for stealing three shillings worth of copper.
The Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books 1802-1849 include character reports written by the “gaoler”. Creed served his term alongside murderers, thieves and bigamists after being convicted in Middlesex on 25 June, 1823. Another inmate of the era was 84-year-old William Davies, who was sentenced to seven years for stealing sheep.
Salty Ocean Stories Wanted
Scuttlefish is all about the ocean. How we relate to it, how we love it, how it almost kills us, how it provides for us, how we dream about it, how we wish we were in it while we are stuck in front of our computers.
It’s not supposed to be heavy on some things over other things, surfing over, say, spearfishing. But it is because I don’t know that much about the ocean. What I’m trying to say is that if you love the ocean, and have a different perspective on it than I do–and everyone’s perspective is different–I’d love to run your stories.
You don’t have to be a waterman, born in Hawaii or in Australia or California. You just have to have a good, different, story for me about your own personal relationship with the sea. Child or Grandparent, professional waterman or beach goer, your story and stoke, belong right here.
Ship Owners Invested $1.57 Billion for Vessel Acquisitions in August
16.09.2010 – Despite the fact that usually the month of August is a slow one for the maritime industry in general, this time around, it wasn’t the case, as can be demonstrated by the intense activity reported by shipbroker Golden Destiny in the sale and purchase front. According to the latest montly report of the broker, compiled by Maria Bertzeletou in cooperation with Hellenic Shipping News Worldwide, the monthly increase versus July in terms of sale and purchase activity was higher by more than 41%.
“Purchase plans of Chinese and Greek investors have been fairly quiet with Greeks holding around 7.2% of the S&P market, in terms of reported number of S&P deals, in contrast to Chinese holding around 13.4%. Bulk carriers are again in the spotlight after falling behind during July with smaller size vessels (handysizes and supramaxes) being more popular purchase candidates. The total invested capital estimated to be around US$ 1,579,050,000 with 103 vessels reported to have changed hands” said Golden Destiny.
Ship Simulator Extremes: Core Campaign Trailer
Paradox Interactive today released a new trailer for “Ship Simulator Extremes”, the last of three videos that outline the main campaigns and their missions.
“Tailored to the true maritime fan, the Core Mission Campaign engages you in eleven missions featuring core ship simulation gameplay. Control a harbor tug as you tow huge container vessels through harbor traffic. Fight an oil rig fire with firefighting ships. Take on the role of a Coastguard Captain and inspects vessels for contraband and illegal cargo. Experience the harbors of the world as you travel to New York, San Francisco, Rotterdam and Sydney, Hamburg, Marseille, Calais and others.”
Toot Your Own Horn Dept: Five Maritime Art Blogs That Captivate
Marine Cafe Blog – Manila is a cultural desert. Pop culture in the malls. Campus literary writing on university campuses. And – for the philistine rich and middle class – Broadway musicals at the Marcos-era Cultural Center of the Philippines. Forget about maritime art. It doesn’t exist hereabouts. If you hanker for this kind of art, travel to some traditional shipping country like the US. We’ve chosen another route: a virtual voyage in search of blogs that deal with or contain maritime art.
Monkey Fist is a smack-talking, potty mouthed, Yankee hating, Red Sox fan in Portland, Maine. In addition to compiling Maritime Monday, she blogs about nautical history, marine science, art, current events, and coastal New England life on Casco Bay Boaters blog & Tumblr. (NEW!)
Submit story ideas, news links, photographs, or items of interest to her at [email protected]. She can also out-belch any man.
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