The Most Recent Ship Report Podcast:

Operation Boatlift: a maritime miracle during 9/11

In the midst of all the sad and horrific remembrances of the 9/11 terrorist attack on September 11, 2001, a some events stand out as triumphs of the human spirit in a time of tragedy. One of those in the maritime realm was Boatlift - a spontaneous and heartfelt response to a call from the US Coast Guard for "all available boats" in New York Harbor, to come to the southern tip of Manhattan Island to help in a rescue effort. More than 600 sailors on 150 different vessels heard the call and...

Archive Podcasts:

Liquefaction: a dangeous twist of physics that makes some cargoes dangerous

Jul 12, 2021

Today we’ll talk about liquefaction: the tendency of some cargoes that are solid (certain kinds of mineral ores), but can behave like liquids in a cargo hold under certain conditions. It’s a dangeous consequence of basic physics and how cargoes are loaded and stored. If that happens, it’s not a ship you want to be on.

A bit about that Heat Dome and how it relates to the Pacific Ocean

Jun 29, 2021

What’s wth this “heat dome” situation we’ve been experiencing in the Pacific Northwest, in areas that are normally cool? We’ll talk today about what causes a heat dome to occur. Part of it has to do with ocean temperatures in the Pacific.

Image courtesy of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.

Another cruise ship will be stored in Astoria

Jun 22, 2021

The Port of Astoria has made arrangements to store another ocean-going cruise ship at the port docks. She’s a U.S flag cruise ships called the “American Pride” and she is normally based in Hawaii where she takes passengers between island ports there.

Image of the American Pride, courtesy James Brennan from Molokai Hawaii, United States, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Today marks the Summer Solstice in the Northern Hemisphere

Jun 21, 2021

Today is one of two annual astronomical solstice events. This one we call the beginning of summer in the Northern Hemisphere, and the start of winter in the Southern Hemisphere.

We’ll talk about what’s happening out there in space that so deeply affects us here on Earth.

This image courtesy of photographer Andrew Dunn, and Wikimedia Commons.

Steep rises in shipping costs mean higher prices for consumers

Jun 14, 2021

As the effects of the pandemic continue in global shipping, we’re seeing prices rise sharply on container goods. The result could be higher prices on familiar goods, like coffee, toys and furniture. Some goods like anchovies and olives, could be hard to come by in some places.

The cruise ship Pride of America is in Astoria today: here’s why

Jun 02, 2021

Yesterday a huge (927-foot-long) cruise ship sailed into the Columbia River and docked at the Port of Astoria. Since cruises don’t restart until July in the U.S., what is she doing here? Turns out she’s only here for a short stop, then on to Portland for maintenance before the season begins. But this is not your ordinary cruise ship…

Rip current claims a life on the Long Beach Peninsula

Jun 01, 2021

This holiday weekend, with its gorgeous weather, drew many visitors to Pacific Northwest beaches. For one family, the weekend ended in tragedy, as a 14 year old boy was swept out to sea off Long Beach, Washington. Another life claimed by the ocean, because someone did not understand what they were up against here, despite posted warning signs, and numerous deaths annually.

The bottom line here is this: Pacific Northwest waters are not a pool, not a lake, not a placid beach in Hawaii or Florida where the water is like a bathtub and the waves are gentle. It’s cold, there are merciless currents and your chances of dying are high.

For the average visitor, these waters are not safe to swim in. But clearly, the message is not getting out to people.

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