Monday, November 30, 2009

Rough Weather and Long Days Part 2

That night we were sent inland to a calmer harbor for a nights rest.Upon awakening at 6 am we were greeted by members of the USCG and the salvage team hired to get the tug off the beach.Our sister tug was loaded up with 12 inch towline and we headed back to Va Beach.After arriving and seeing that the seas had laid down overnight we had a feeling that this wasn't going to be as easy as everyone else thought.In theory raw horsepower was to be used to free the grounded barge.In reality some luck and another higher than normal tide was going to be needed.With help from USCG zodiac boats and some extreme luck we were hooked to the bow of the barge via the emergency tow wire that was already on the barge prior to it's beaching.All offshore barges are equipped with an emergency tow wire and bridals in case the original tow gear fails.The problem is in rough seas it's literally a death wish to try and grab it off the side of the barge,so it ends up on the beach.Our sister tug paid out the 12 inch line it was equipped with earlier and it was towed to the stern of the barge with the help of the USCG boat.Now with the stern and bow being pulled on loosely the salvage team had great hope the job would be over soon.Apparently they forgot to check the tides.The barge moved all of zero feet and with sundown coming on quick the tugs were told to keep the lines tight throughout the night and they would return in the morning.At seven am with high tide quickly approaching the tugs were given the order to "give it all she's got" and the barge made a great leap of fifty feet.With the salvage team now understanding the situation of needing a higher than normal tide they quickly saw that the next day the tides were to run 2 feet above normal with a strong wind from the north.Noticing all efforts were futile before then everyone was told to ease the engines back down.Knowing the next morning may be there last chance before drastic measures,dredging the barge out,another tug was brought in and hooked on to the stern.The next morning brought rough seas and high winds.The salvage arrived and gave the order for full ahead and just like that the barge came off the beach bow first.It was a difficult hook up break down and just pain in the ass.That being said it's these kind of jobs that keep me interested and make the days go by quickly on board.Sitting around at a dock playing cards and watching movies is for the birds.Now if the economy would improve maybe we could get a few out of the country jobs.


{nUtTyPrOfFeSsOr} said...

Glad your tugnuts got it off the beach

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Swamp Thing said...

Yo that dude is wicked retahded!

The Downeast Duck Hunter said...

Wow, Swamp Thing is speaking downeastah!!!

Swamp Thing said...

Last summer on I-95 outside Baltimore, I saw a boat on trailer (Mass. tags) with the boat name, "Wicked Pissah."