With the greatest respect to the US Navy for a job well done Radeng. Don't you think that is what any civilised human being would do. Indeed, it is the duty of every seaman (and airman for that matter) to do his utmost to save life. I do remember many many years ago, a Russian warship, (all of which carried surgeons in those days) diverting a long way to carry out a similar mission on a UK fishing boat.
"US Navy does it's job" shouldn't be news headlines. They are better than that.
Brick, I'm not trying to do down what the might of the US navy did. But consider everyday life in the UK. A charity does more!
"Last year RNLI lifeboats rescued more than 8,000 people, an average of 22 people per day." http://www.rnli.org.uk/what_we_do And most of these rescues barely make the local press, far less the international news. Edited to say that "The biggest navy in the world fails to save girl with ruptured appendix". Might have made bigger headlines?
(Blame the wine. Not me.)
Well done indeed to the USN and particularly to the people involved.
However, without taking anything whatsoever away from them, I have to say that I am somewhat taken aback that a 77000 ton (GRT) five star cruise ship carrying up to about 2000 passengers (plus a substantial crew) apparently does not have the facilties or medical staff to deal with a burst appendix, or presumably even to have prevented the situation from getting to that serious a level.
In my day every merchant ship carried the Board of Trade book of surgery and the necessary knives tweezers catgut needles an such,scrub down the mess room table,bottle of ether and bobs yer uncle,generally the Chief Stewards job with the cook assisting. Always enough canvas and fire bars in the paint locker if they made a arse of it Tell the kids nowadays an they wunt believe yer.
However, without taking anything whatsoever away from them, I have to say that I am somewhat taken aback that a 77000 ton (GRT) five star cruise ship carrying up to about 2000 passengers (plus a substantial crew) apparently does not have the facilties or medical staff to deal with a burst appendix, or presumably even to have prevented the situation from getting to that serious a level
I must say I do agree with you Jack. Next time I take a cruise I may ask a few more questions. Now once on a Norwegian Cruise Line holiday we met a doctor on the cruise that had the cruise for free in exchange for being the ships doctor on the ship, he was a surgeon.
Aye Tony. Ship's Captains Medical Guide. A mighty tome. One could extract a haimorrhoide with a packing extractor in those days. And little pain involved. I understand that in the first edition, they could actually spell haemeroid and Di Rea.
It is a great story, for everyone. Unfortunately, the many rescues accomplished by everyone's armed forces every year go unnoticed.
For those involved, it will be a story to tell the grandkids 50 years from now.
That is actually what my mother may tell her four great grandchildren this Yule. As a stewardess on the same ship my father captained back in the 50ies she had a ruptured appendix while crossing the Atlantic Ocean from Europe bound for the US. A distress call was made and a nearby British RN ship replied and informed they had a doctor and operation facilities. My mother was transferred from her vessel in a wooden lifeboat powered by oars (50ies, remember), successfully operated on and later transferred to an onshore hospital before being repatried to Norway. Can't remember the name of the ship, but have a brass ashtray and a plaque somewhere with the name on. Had appendicitis myself on a journey from Newcastle NSW to Europe, but was dumped in Cape Town after 15 day on 20g boiled water/hour and nothing but. Great way of loosing weight, pity about the nervous chief mate who checked his knifes trice a day and never had to utilise them.
Brick: The RNLI is a registered charity and one that receives not a penny from the government it is entirely funded by charitable contributions.
Its boats are crewed entirely by volunteers the overwhelming majority unpaid (I understand that some Coxswains and 2nd Coxes get a small stipend). These dudes are heroes no doubt about it and since the Instititution was founded in 1824 many of it's volunteers have paid the ultimate price - "that others may live"
The Ship Captainís Medical Guide was indeed a magnificent document. Seems a little thinner now at 232 pages? Used a number of times in anger by my good self but, thankfully, only once was I on the receiving end - I still have the scars to prove that the 2nd mate cannot sew neat stitches
For such a motley crew we seemed a healthy lot,don't recal any serious illnesses or injuries,odd dose of crabs and such,odd cutlass slash or dint in head from belaying pin,never seen anybody buried at sea either don't think that was as common in peacetime as Hollywood likes to portray,prolly to many forms to fill in now.
Agreed good job by all involved and it's always heartening to see glimmers of true US nature that used to be so abundantly evident from the past. A step in the right direction I'd say and helps shut up all those US haters.
As the USS Ronald Reagan is regarded as US sovereign territory for anyone onboard I do hope proper immigration and passport control procedures were carried out. I'd hate to think what might have happened if the passenger had been some Icelandic bint with a bit of a pain in her side !!
Snifferdog- You couldn't be more wrong, actually. This kind of operation is done all the time and seldom makes anything but the local papers when it does. I've flown at least three myself that involved foreign nationals to U.S. Navy ships from foreign flagged vessels and countless others involving foreign nationals to U.S. Coast Guard ships. Probably the foreign guest won't be invited down to the reactor room or to the C4I center while aboard the ship, but they certainly will be given best possible care and protection without hesitation. Once the person gets ashore, an immigration official from that country will examine the person and their papers... even if, in the case of your Icelandic bint... it were... Iceland.