Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Checklist for the Suez Canal

There are several unique preparations that must take place before transiting the Suez Canal. Rigging the Suez Canal light would be one of them. The light is a very large singular headlight like device designed to emit a split beam of light from the ships bow. It is a requirement for any vessel transiting the canal though I have not once seen it used nor has anyone I have worked with.

What if the ship were not to have one? Then the Canal Authority would gladly rent a light with a team of electricians to accompany, rig and operate it if for once in a century the pilot needed to see the bank of the canal at night.

Other preparations include readying lines in case we have to moor in the canal, rigging the gangways to accommodate the canal pilots, they refuse to use the standard pilot ladders, filling a cabinet full of candy and marlborough reds and collecting the crew's stash of porn.

While the cartons of cigarettes are very necessary to ensure a smooth, successful and happy transit when dealing with inspectors, pilots and agents, the porn collection is the captain's precaution in case any of the port states we'll be visiting in the Mid East decide to go Sharia on us and inspect the crew quarters.

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