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Rescuing Oscar: Safety Drill on Godspeed

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Dockside, Hampton, VA

We left early from Ft. Pocahontas this morning and arrived in Hampton midafternoon. Hampton is a regular stop for us. We typically stop here for the less glamorous tasks so necessary when operating a ship – taking on fuel and discharging black water at one of the local pump out stations. While we got a little motor sailing in today, there were many miles to cover and we knew the forecast would be more challenging as the afternoon progressed, so motoring was the order of the day.

While off Newport News Shipbuilding around lunchtime, we conducted a man overboard drill. One of the scariest views possible is that of your ship quickly sailing away from you after you have accidently fallen overboard. Because the real threat of a man overboard, fire, and abandon ship situation exists on any ship, we conduct regular drills to train our crew and practice responding to each of these emergencies. These drills provide a baseline for a real emergency, which rarely happen on sunny days with light winds!

During a man overboard drill, we deploy a dummy nicknamed “Oscar”. As an illustration of what it is

like trying to spot a man in the water, try to find “Oscar” in each of the attached pictures and then imagine being in open waters where the wind and seas would be much higher!

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