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South Street Seaport Museum welcomes everyone to Spring Revival on Saturday, April 26th, 12 noon – 6pm, with free activities and music, and an opening ceremony at 2pm!
Join us to celebrate the spring opening of our historic ships, which tell the story of how our great natural harbor gave rise to the metropolis we know today. Tour 1907 lightship AMBROSE, 1911 barque PEKING, and 1885 schooner PIONEER.
See traditional artisans working on the pier, including the carving of a new figurehead for 1885 ship WAVERTREE.
Sing along with shanties, and enjoy the bands. Help us set a sail, and join in other family friendly activities.
Everything takes place on Pier 16, at Fulton and South Streets on the East River in downtown Manhattan. Rain or shine.
via Capt. Maggie Flanagan for the Working Harbor Committee
Have you ever seen these huge ships that regularly sail in and out of our harbor?
They have no portholes to speak of, and look like gargantuan floating boxes, their mysterious contents shrouded within.
They are called “Ro-Ro’s” by the industry… but why?
Ro-Ro’s are vehicle transport ships.
Vehicles, unlike other cargo, are not packed into shipping containers and loaded by gantry or transfer cranes. Instead the automobiles are driven right onto the ship and then off again, once they reach their port of destination.
“Ro-Ro” is short for “roll-on, roll-off”, a descriptive term used to describe car carrying cargo vessels. Loading and unloading vehicles in this way is very effective in getting the gigantic carriers in and out of port quickly and efficiently.
I wonder how many Ro-Ro’s cruise in and our of our port daily. I never fail to see at least one every time I am out on the water.
What about you? Have you see any Ro-Ro’s lately? Share them with us! Post your photos at the WHC photo pool on flickr.
And to all who celebrate, a very Happy Easter and Passover to you and your loved ones!
Some ships come to grief, and when they do the salvage industry is there to right the wrongs.
Join us for the Working Harbor Committee’s annual spring program showcasing this little known, but vitally important, arm of the maritime industry with dramatic films of actual salvage operations and talks by some of the salty professionals who work in the industry.
Tuesday 6 May 2014
6 – 9 p.m.
Community Church of New York
40 E. 35th Street
New York, NY 10016
Refreshments will be served
See dramatic footage of:
- the raising of the SS Normandie which burned and sank at Pier 88 North River in 1942
- the dismantling and salvage of the freighter, New Flame, off the coast of Gibraltar
- and largest salvage operation in history – the raising of the cruise ship Costa Concordia last September off Giglio, Italy
A panel of three salvage industry professionals will give a brief overview of the salvage industry, describe their work as salvage masters in some hands-on projects, and answer questions. Reserve your seat today!
by Capt. Betsy Frawley Haggerty for the Working Harbor Committee
The nice weather days we had last week were really welcome, but that blast of April snow was NOT. Still, I’ve had some quiet days shooting this week, with lots of activity to shoot.
All photos taken the week of 4/13/14. Until next week… John Skelson.
Just a quick post today of a very cool photo-series by Mitch Waxman – who went down to Newtown Creek over the weekend to get a look at the dredging that is going on. The clam-shell “scooper” that was spit-shiny clean a couple of weeks ago has now been well worked, and is smeared with the black, oily sediments of the federal superfund site.
Check out how DonJon’s rig and tugs seem to match the brilliant blue sky as they work on clearing the bed of the creek. The dredging operation is now running 24/7 and if all goes as planned, should be completed in the next month or so.
Well, as luck would have it, NO photos of the USS Slater arriving at Caddell’s Staten Island.
She departed Albany, Sunday morning at about 8:45 AM; and arrived and turned into the Kill van Kull at 3:30AM Monday. Not a good time for photography! I hope to be able to get some photos of her soon, and so here are this week’s photos.
Reinauer was the big mover on Wednesday morning, 5 of them. Also, US Army Corps of Engineers boats were on the job in the KVK. Strangely though, while I was there, NO Moran, McAllister or Vane tugs passed by.
Until next week… John Skelson.
The National Transportation Safety Board has determined that captain error caused the Seastreak ferry accident in lower Manhattan last year. The investigation found the vessel was being operated improperly at the time of the accident.
The Seastreak Wall Street ferry captain had switched the vessel’s propulsion systems into backup mode earlier in the journey and had forgotten to switch them back. While in backup mode, the propellers remain in a forward pitch position which caused the vessel to accelerate forward rather than slow down while attempting to dock.
NTSB Chairman Deborah A.P. Hersman also called out the US Coast Guard for not requiring marine safety management systems – recommended by the NTSB almost a decade ago.
NTSB: Seastreak LLC had no safety management system (SMS) in place to identify risks and take corrective actions. Although the NTSB recommended that SMS be required in 2005 and the Coast Guard was provided the authority to require them by Congress in 2010, SMSs are still not required for domestic passenger vessels. It is time to require that every passenger vessel implement an SMS.”
A safety management system would have required the company to maintain current documents, to train employees to integrate safe practices into both routine vessel operations and emergency preparations and to clearly define the roles of the crew members, ensuring the captain had assistance during the emergency.
The report goes on to contribute the severity of injuries to the lack of procedures restricting passengers from stairwells and other high-risk areas. There was also no alarm sounded or announcements from the captain to inform the passengers of an emergency.
Read the NTSB Press Release here… or download the PDF summary – including findings, probable cause and recommendations here.
by Mai Armstrong for Working Harbor Committee
26 mph winds, 30 degrees, cold on the water! I haven’t taken many photos this week as I’ve been away upstate for a few days visiting my mother for her 99th birthday, no water nearby to shoot.
Today, back on the water all is quiet, a couple of tankers docking in Bayonne, and not much tug traffic. I’ve also included a video, from last week, of tugs turning a tanker around on the KVK.
Tanker Turning on the KVK. Video: ©John Skelson
That’s all for now, have a good week.
Staten Island photographer, John Skelson has made the news again! Kudos to our friend and Friday’s ship spotting guest-blogger, here at the Working Harbor Committee blog.
John’s striking ship spotting photography on the Kill Van Kull has caught the interest of local and national media alike.
Ryan Lavis/Staten Island Advance: When local photographer John Skelson bought his first camera, in 1970, he loaded it with film, and headed to his favorite spot along the shoreline of Staten Island, just under the Bayonne Bridge.
He spent countless hours there snapping away at the colorful variety of ships cruising along New York Harbor and the Kill van Kull — from massive container ships to freighters, tugboats and oil tankers. Today, not much has changed.
Container ships “carry about every type of merchandise you can imagine” from all over the world. Some transport expensive cars, while others are laden with orange juice.
“What you see coming through here, most people don’t even know exists, but just about every bit of commerce that comes into the United States passes through the Kill van Kull,” Skelson said.
by Mai Armstrong for Working Harbor Committee