As the weather gets warmer, the Vessel Operations CTE program is going underway more often. The Sophomore Class of Vessel Operations has been training and working on the cranes on Privateer. The importance in keeping communication consistent between crew members is very important in any boat we are underway in. However, the difference in what is communicated on Privateer is quite different from what is usually said on other boat such as Indy 7 amd Virginia. Privateer has an A-frame crane that is often used to lift big, heavy objects. If not handled properly, these large objects can become loosened, can swing around, and possibly damage property and even injure crew members and/or passengers. Communication and repeating commands is very important and many people have overlooked the importance of it. Communication should be reinforced at all times on the water, whether we are docking, picking up moorings, not just when we’re operating cranes.
On May 30, the sophomores and juniors of the Vessel Ops program took an interview for a CTE summer internship involving working on the water at the MAST center. This internship would involve working on the docks or underway on a boat. While were underway we will capture more experiences and learn more tools, helping us become more equipped for the future. We get paid $11 or more an hour, 25 hours a week, for 6 weeks. I plan on using the money to save for college tuition in 2 years. I look forward to this internship, learning new methods of functioning on the water, and exploring new waters.
I was getting picked up at the South Street Seaport at 10:15. Virginia was supposed to be here by ten but was late–not surprising. Some juniors and I volunteered to help paint and clean Indy 7 on a Saturday.
It was the start of warmer weather. Winter was over and Indy was in desperate need for a new coat of paint. She’s been out all winter and working hard, getting messy as a training vessel for harbor school students. A few days before this Saturday, Indy was sanded down by tenth graders during our class period. The other classes finished the job as one period isn’t long enough to sand an entire boat.
Once the boat was smooth and sanded we could start the painting process. That Saturday myself and another junior went to Governors Island early in the morning to paint. At first we used paint thinner just to take the dirt off to make Indy smoother for the paint. Using that paint thinner was very tedious work and took the whole morning.
Then on to the actual painting, it was a very hot day so painting wasn’t so much fun, however the after look of the boat made us all really proud of the work we did. Indy 7 looked so good. She defiantly deserved a good paint job and I felt like I did it justice.
This January, I attended the 2017 New York Boat Show at Jacob Javits Center along with other Harbor School students and staff. At the show I saw a lot of really attractive vessels such as yachts, personal water crafts, and party boats. There was even a simulator similar to the one in the MAST Center, except it was just one screen, a joystick, and a wheel. It was pretty neat to practice speed and docking a boat, but also was more of a video game with graphics at the same time.
Out of all these things at the show, what stood out to me the most was the panel of veterans and entrepreneurs in the maritime industry across the country. They each told their story in which led to their success in the industry, and answered many questions, giving useful advice to us students.
This stood out to me the most because of the many different generations of people present at the discussion. There were the teenage students (us), the adult teachers watching, and the presenters varied from a young 35 year old tug boat company owner from Staten Island, to a man more then double his age who’s been working as a mechanic and engineer since the early 1970s. I love that no matter how much time has past, new faces of new upcoming generations still will have similar interests and could even develop the known basics into bigger ideas which could forever change the maritime industry all around the world.
Fishers Island is a small community of roughly 200 people, 13 miles from the coast of Long Island. Students attending the trip got to leave school right after seventh period to catch the 2:30 Ferry back to Manhattan. The bus ride to the Fishers Island ferry took a grueling 6 hours with no pitstops. I sat in the back of the bus, along with a couple friends. During the bus ride, we watched Moana and sang along with the songs. Next movie queued was Ghost Busters. When the bus finally made it to the ferry landing, there were tons of pizza boxes awaiting our arrival. The ferry boat, Race Point, carried us over to Fishers Island. Boat ride took another 45 minutes. Tents were assigned, 3 people per tent, and set up. By this time it’s already past 10PM and most were pumped for the following days activities. Lights out: 11:30PM
6AM wake up. Breakfast consisted of eggs with a side of peppers, bacon, toast and a choice of lemonade, iced tea and water. After breakfast, everyone mustered for informant of the days activities. Vessel Operations assisted Professional Diving in oyster cage recovery, which took all day in 50 degree water. It was cold to say the least. One by one divers jumped off the boat and into the waters. Towards the middle of the day, Vessel Ops students jumped off and did some swimming as past time in between recoverys. The frigid waters were refreshing at first as the air temperature began to increase as the day wore on, but the freezing waters soon felt very cold. As Vessel Ops students, together, jumped into the water, Aaron went from boat to boat. The rest of the day passed on. Dinner was exciting: a big campfire and barbecue, complete with hamburgers, hotdogs, and cookies. As the night continued, and our singing got progressively worse, it was time to put up the towel in and head for bed. Lights out: 11PM
Yet another 6AM wake up. Breakfast was oatmeal with fruit and brown sugar, along with a choice of lemonade, iced tea, and water. Today is a shorter day considering the expected return time was 5PM. Tents were packed and once the early morning muster was complete, each CTE headed off to do their own thing. Vessel Ops did pivot turns and docking practice. Eventually all boats got geared and headed for a gas dock to fill up. After all boats got their share of gas, we headed out into open water for some fun. The boats sped along the water over to the ferry landing and back, with some high speed stops in between. Once returning to the school, we grabbed our stuff and boarded the 3:30 boat to mainland. The bus was awaiting us and once everybody boarded, we were underway headed for New York City. Return time: roughly 5:30PM
The island was beautiful. It felt like a summer vacation in a short span of 3 days. Everything was so green compared to the red brick and grey cement we see here in the city. With downtime, you couldn’t help but look at the scenery and compare that to what we have here in NYC. The trip was amazing, and I hope to do it again in upcoming years.
Captain Luis took some of the sophomore students on tough boat and gave a small intro on small boat handling.
(An Aerial view of Enterprise, 1945)
USS Enterprise – nicknamed the “Big E,” “Lucky E,” “The Grey Ghost”- is a Yorktown-class aircraft carrier launched in 1936. She was laid down July 16 1934 and launched on October 3 1936. She served in World War II gaining 20 battle stars, the most of any US ship during the war.
Enterprise was at sea the day of Pearl Harbor and received a radio messages reporting the port was under attack. She sent up her fighters – Grumman F4F Wildcat fighters – and put into Pearl Harbor for fuel and supplies. Her screening fighters were attacked by anti-aircraft defenses, but a pilot radioed in saying the planes were American and the attacks ceased. Three days later, Enterprise aircraft sank Japanese submarine I-70
Enterprise participated in the battle of Midway when American code breakers broke Japanese code for an attack on a airfield on Midway island. American carrier sent squadrons of torpedo and dive bombers to attack a fleet of Japanese ships, including four aircraft carriers. The Japanese task force was up against a small fleet of two American carriers and a few destroyers, cruisers and battleships. However, the Americans struck first. Torpedo bombers from the Enterprise reached the Japanese task force but scored no hits. Dive bombers from the Enterprise, USS Yorktown (Enterprise’s lead ship) struck next. The bombers scored hit leaving three of the four carrier ships ablaze. Within an hour of the battle, the only battle ready Japanese carrier Hiryu was left alone. Hiryu launched her planes and crippled the Yorktown, which was eventually sunk by a Japanese submarine while in tow. The Americans suffered the loss of USS Yorktown and 113 planes but the Japanese lost was far heavier. The Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) lost four aircraft carriers, one cruiser and 272 aircraft.
Enterprise went on to gain 20 battle stars, and at one point, the only battle ready US carrier.
Class and Type of Ship: Yorktown-class Aircraft carrier
Commissioned: May 12, 1938
Decommissioned: February 17, 1947
Displacement: 19,800 tons (Standard), 32,060 (Full load)
Length: 824 feet 9 inches, 827 feet 5 inches (1942)
Beam: 109 feet 6 inches
Speed: 32.5 knots
Range: 12,500 nautical miles at 15 knots
Crew: 2,217 offices and enlisted