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Old 02-02-2005, 05:08 PM
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M/V Explorer arrived safely in Honolulu Monday afternoon
(HST) for repairs after being struck by 50-foot wave in
the north central Pacific last Wednesday.
The ship, which used to operate as Royal Olympic's
Olympia Explorer is under charter to the University of
Pittsburgh for their Semester at Sea program. Now that
the ship is on land, many of the students are telling
their stories to the news media, and providing some
interesting interior video of the ship rolling, the
extremely rough seas, and the students in life jackets
sitting on the floor and sliding from side to side at the
ship rolled.
Aside from the interesting visuals, the media is
having a hard time finding students with anything bad to
say. The sound bites most often used are from those who
didn't know much about cruise ship safety and equated
putting on life jackets and going to muster stations with
preparing to abandon ship, and those people thought they
were going to die.
They didn't realize that modern cruise ships are
designed so that it is almost impossible for them to
capsize even in conditions worse than Explorer was
facing. Also like many cruise ship passengers, it's
probably never been explained to them that the reason
passengers are usually called to their muster stations
(as in this case) is so they can all be accounted for and
the officers are certain that all the passengers are in a
safe area. It seldom goes from that stage to boarding
lifeboats.
What's not making the sound bites is the praise the
students have for Capt. "Buzz" Radican, a personable
officer and favorite among the kids (they call him
Captain Buzz), and Chief Engineer Neil Carney, whose
previous assignment was the staff engineer on the Queen
Mary. Numerous students said how they appreciated
Radican's frequent announcements to keep them apprized of
everything that was happening, some as simple as the fact
that he was turning the ship and it was going to roll
back the other way.
Jim Lawrence, the spokesperson for V Ships, which
provides the crew and operates Explorer for the
consortium of banks which now own it, told CND this
afternoon that they are still assessing the damage. Most
of the damage to the ship itself appears to be in the
electronics on the bridge, or more accurately, under the
bridge. When the wave broke the window in the bridge, it
didn't really flood the bridge as has been reported, but
it did put a lot of water in there and drained under the
floor where all the electronic cables are leading from
the bridge controls to the rest of the ship, disabling
most of the equipment and displays on the bridge. (There
are duplicates elsewhere which continued to operate.)
When that happened, it also shut down all four
engines. The first was restarted within a few minutes,
and the second within a couple hours. The other two were
operational shortly thereafter, but Explorer normally
operates using only two. (Royal Olympic had Explorer and
its sister, Voyager, built to be the fastest cruise ships
in the world to operate some very lengthy itineraries in
a 7-day period. When they operate at top speed, using all
four engines for propulsion, the ships are very fuel
inefficient and consume large quantities of fuel
quickly.) Lawrence said that since the ship was in no
danger, the captain chose to sail to Honolulu at a
reduced speed of about 18 knots to make it a more
comfortable ride in the heavy seas for the passengers.
The ship certainly didn't "limp" into port, he said, as
many of the press reports have characterized it. Explorer
was capable of operating at normal speeds, and for those
kinds of sea conditions, 18 knots was normal.
Lawrence said in the hotel areas there was some
superficial damage such as glass panels being broken as
unsecured chairs and tables slid into them, and items
sliding off shelves, particularly in the library where
the shelves were emptied during the rolling. He mentioned
that the students had a particularly positive attitude.
For example, when faculty made an announcement and asked
for volunteers to help reshelve the books in the library,
so many students showed up that all of them couldn't even
get into the room.
there are now about twenty
technical experts in Hawaii working on Explorer, and the
damage assessment should be completed by late Thursday or
Friday. Parts are being sourced both locally and by air
from the manufacturers in Europe.
V Ships should have an estimate by the end of the week
as to when the repairs can be completed and the ship can
get underway. Lawrence stressed that the Semester at Sea
classes are continuing onboard Explorer while it is in
Honolulu and they don't expect any disruption to the
program. The University of Pittsburgh said they are also
exploring options of flying students ahead of the ship to
a port and housing them on land until the ship catches
up.
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Old 02-02-2005, 08:32 PM
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I find it quite interesting, how hard the media is working to dis-credit and destroy the cruise industry.
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Old 02-03-2005, 05:54 AM
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When did this happen and where was it? I have not read or seen anything else about this except on this web site
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Old 02-03-2005, 06:13 AM
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Ridgid,it was on Good Morning America Wednesday morning. I didn't think it was as bad as the media was saying....they always blow everything out of proportion.
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Old 02-03-2005, 08:53 AM
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Ridgid, I just heard Paul W. Smith show on WJR talk to a young girl from Eastern who is on that ship. She graduated from the detroit area. Also gave much praise and said the staff was wonderful. They took good care of the kids the entire time. It was an interesting interview. The girl called her mother on her cell phone while they were being hit... can you imagine being the mother (or father) on the other end of that call? The girl is staying with the program... no plans on coming home until it's all over.
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Old 02-03-2005, 02:55 PM
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I was just wondering if anyone actually seen the show or if it was one of those neighbor's friend's sister-in-law's cousin urban legend thing. I don't know how many times I have heard about the Liz Claiborn on Oprah or the Newly Wed episode thing along with all the other BS that is started by college kids with nothing else to do.

At MSU a few years back as a joke some students (son included but won't admit to it) started a web site to save the River Chicken. It started out as a joke and then the EPA, Animal Rights group, DNR, and even Green Peace got involved. It even got published in the Wall Street Journal to save this chicken. They listed the names and adresses of congressmen, senators and etc to write to petitioning them to save this "chicken". It was a farce and a joke but the media found the web site and wanted to be the first with this ground breaking news. I have to admit the kids did a good job at fooling all the rightous do gooders. What made it so rediculous was a picture was even posted showing the chicken. It was a common rooster. What got them in real trouble was when people started to send money. They eventually had to shut the site down because it was getting out of hand. The irony was there was never a retraction by anyone admitting that they were hoodwinked.


I see that the web site is still available
www.msu.edu/~shusterr/wvrc.htm
 
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Tags
2005, buz, buzz, captain, carney, explorer, honolulu, indicted, mv, neil, radican, sea, semester

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