Tuesday, September 6, 2011
...3 years ago today, aboard the somewhat unseaworthy steam tanker "New River," we started preparing for hurricane Ike, loading storm ballast and securing everything on board in preparation for a direct hit by the hurricane. Ike devastated the Galveston, TX area, and after dragging us nearly 300 miles backwards over the course of three days, spat us out on September 11, 2008.
I still have bad dreams about losing steering while at the helm on the last night, and the ship getting into a parametric roll that threw most of the crew around the house like coffee beans shaking in the can. Under extreme circumstances, the captain made several key decisions that saved the ship- storm ballasting among the most important. I often wondered if the ship would have lost stability had we not loaded down some of the cargo tanks with seawater.