Thursday, February 19, 2009

Come on Saturday

Penn Maritime tug Dolphin

Oh my it has been a long thirty days on the tug.This time of year,as you can imagine,is the worst time of the year to have any sort of an outside job.Everything from the weather,wind and water is dangerously cold.Now after a few weeks spent in Rhode Island you would think that the temperatures in Philadelphia would be a relief,you would be wrong.It's not so much the temperature,it's the wind coming off the water.I don't care how many layers of clothes you put on,the wind will cut through them like butter on a biscuit.We are all as prepared as ever and on our toes this time of year.Safety concerns most important as things can go from bad to worse in a heartbeat.Everyone has to remember,tugboats don't have brakes.If you fall off the side it will be at the least twenty minutes before the tug can circle around to get you.Put two and two together and figure out how you could possibly stay alive for more than 5 minutes in cold water.That's if your lucky and didn't knock your head on the way down and render yourself unconscious face down in the river.Whoa,I better stop,knock on wood,take a deep breath.That means you to mom.

OSG tug Constitution
It's an obvious problem of the job,it's also why we make decent money doing what we do,it's dangerous.I have taken on the nickname of safety nazi by a few of my crew as I tend to go a little overboard with my safety precautions.Really,is there such a thing as overboard with safety when the nearest help could be days away,literally days away.The new deckhands that seem to be filtered through this boat seem to especially hate me after the first 24 hours.It comes with my job to make sure these greenies don't end up swimming with the fishes.I take that personally,which says something because I let most things go like water off a ducks back.The greenies are a huge safety problem not just to themselves but to me as well.I'm right next to them every step of the way,if they get in a problem it's on me to get them out of it.Thankfully I haven't had to many major problems with any of them.I also haven't ended up with any new friends lately,coincidence I guess.The way I see it is,eventually it will click in there skulls that I was merely trying to help.Somewhere down the line they will get in a situation and think what would the dude do?Then it makes it all worth it.


The Downeast Duck Hunter said...

Safety, safety, and safety is right buddy. The ocean is not forgiving and will be here much longer than any of us so our efforts on it must be with the safest regard. Even when you are so cautious, the surprising curveball can find your way. Doesn't matter if it's a lobsterboat or a tug, being on the water isn't the same as on land.

Enjoy your time off the boat...


tugboatdude said...

Exactly,I'm so cautious about doing everything yet I still find myself in situations that I can't control.It's a team effort out here,if one person screws up it's entirely possible that it will affect the whole crew.Yes I will enjoy my time off reorganizing my hunting gear that is all over the house,porch and backyard.