Old 4th Jan 2019, 03:36
  #37 (permalink)  
Nemo Me Impune Lacessit
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Derbyshire, England.
Posts: 4,033
Did two quite long trips on container ships, the CMA-CGM Columba and the CMA-CGM Vasco de Gama, enjoyed it but long periods of nothing to do except read or look over the surrounding sea for other ships or land.
Going through the Suez canal was probably the most interesting part, followed by watching the maneuvering at each port. Very comfortable cabin, food varies according the nationality of and the likes and dislikes of the crew, pax sat at a separate but adjacent table to the ship's officers. The limit is less than twelve pax, otherwise they then, if over twelve, have to satisfy a mass of legislation pertaining to passenger ships.
We had two on one trip and three on the other! Unrestricted access to the bridge was a godsend, crew usually very happy to discuss anything from seafaring to motor cars, women and houses! The Chief Engineer very happy to show you around down below, one engine, two stroke diesel, goes through three decks, 90,000 HP, max RPM 104. New rules about fuels now though, has to be low sulphur etc. or LNG.
The First Mate still does have the responsibility of loading and unloading but, of course, with the aid of a very large computer programme that the company monitor and the agent in each port as well. Each company does have a master planning section somewhere with staff who can see in many dimensions! Very interesting programme on TV a couple of years ago about a container shipping line's planning office in Hong Kong and how the master plan was fed into the control software for the cranes on shore. When I did it the cost was E110 per day, alcohol, except table wines, extra.
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