I've been diving off the Conception many times

I am heartbroken. Every story I read about the loss of Truth Aquatic's Conception leaves me crying.

I've been diving with Truth Aquatics since I was certified in the late 90s. When I was young they were the Cadillac of California's Live-Aboard fleet. My dive buddy, Bill, and I used to sit around debating if we would schlep all the way to Santa Barbara for the luxury of a several day live-aboard or just get on one of the cheaper, less lovingly cared for and less excellently staffed dive boats out of San Pedro or Oxnard.

Later, having moved to Northern California and found a new dive buddy, Sean, he and a number of friends of ours would meet up annually on a Truth Aquatics boat. Usually the Vision but whenever scheduling didn't work out, the Conception was her near-identical twin with only a few differences to make it funky. The week-long trip from Santa Barabara to Catalina Island, once a year, was something I longed for.

I have made many very dear friends diving with Truth Aquatics. You read about Marcus' work with Extra Life Gaming every year. Dan helps me maintain my BMW and my sanity. Former Boing Boing contributing weirdo Joel Johnson used to join me on those trips. Lisa, Sean, Gary, Dave, Adam, Eileen, Ken, Jamie, Eddie, Sal, Peter, Paddy, Carol. Wonderful people. Incredibly important experiences.

Truth Aquatics has the very best people in the business working to make sure I had the safest and then most enjoyable time I possibly could. Read the rest

Speeding yacht rams anglers' boat

"Hey! Heeeey! HEY! Oh my God."

UPDATE: Charges and a lawsuit were filed against Marlin Lee Larsen, the skipper of the speeding boat. Larsen claimed it was "fake news".

Mr Larsen’s son-in-law, who also was on the boat, told investigators that he had warned his father-in-law to pay attention, that he sometimes saw him using his mobile phone while driving the boat and he had been off-and-on his phone the morning of the crash, according to the sheriff’s report. ... Mr Larsen told The Oregonian the accusation that he was using his phone at the time of the crash was “fake news.” He pleaded not guilty to charges of reckless endangerment and assault and said the lawsuit was unnecessary because no one was seriously hurt.

The charges were dropped upon Larsen's death at 75. Read the rest

Nightmare footage of cruise ship emerging from fog in Venice near-collision

The Costa Deliziosa is a 92,700 tonne cruise ship, and holidaymakers along Venice's Giardini della Bienna got an up-close look at all 294 meters of its length on a foggy, sodden weekend. Too close.

Newsweek reports:

The huge vessel was being pulled along the canal by other tug boats in order to straighten itself out, narrowly avoiding hitting the dock's edge and other smaller boats near it.

During the clip, the Costa Deliziosa's emergency siren can be heard blasting as it desperately swerves to avoid a collision.

Authorities have now launched an investigation into the incident.

Pino Musolino, president of the Port Authority System for the northern Adriatic Sea, said in a statement: "We reserve the right to start a timely check to see if the ship has received the necessary permits. We also intend to evaluate the adoption of any further measures to ensure that ship traffic takes place in complete safety for the city."

A Costa Deliziosa spokesperson blamed "violent gusts". One of those cruise ships, then. Read the rest

Enjoy this video featuring an enormous, nuclear-powered icebreaker

The Soviets built a bunch of nuclear icebreakers: overbearing, overpowered, faintly absurd, and completely awesome.

This video was shot in the Arctic Ocean in March 2018. For 7 days the film crew passed through the Barents Sea to Karsky around the Novaya Zemlya archipelago on the nuclear icebreaker Yamal - we saw the northern lights and polar bears, watched the ships stuck in the ice being towed and were very cold.

Directed by Andrew Efimov. Andrey Rodin piloted the drones. Ivan Golubkov and Yaroslav Kuryanovish worked the footage. Read the rest

Man, 71, successfully floated across the Atlantic in a motorless metal capsule

In December last year, Jean-Jacques Savin, 71, floated away from the Canary Islands off the coast of Africa in an orange capsule he'd built. Last week, he landed at the Dutch Caribbean island of St. Eustatius. Read the rest

Russian tanker loses fight with Korean bridge

What happens when a stoppable force hits an immovable object? The stoppable force stops. The Korea Herald reports:

The Korea Coast Guard (KCG) said the 5,998-ton Seagrand sailed into the side of the Gwangan Bridge at around 4:20 p.m. before turning back to head in the opposite direction. ... The KCG nabbed the vessel and questioned the crew aboard. It said the ship's Russian captain, whose identity is being withheld, had a blood alcohol content of 0.086 percent. The legal limit is 0.03 percent.

I feel there must be more to the story, as 0.08 isn't very drunk—it's the legal limit for driving in most U.S. states and basically the tare weight of a merchant sailor.

You may recognize the bridge, in Busan, from Black Panther. Read the rest

Time-lapse footage of container ships coming and going from international ports

SeaTube [via Metafilter] is a YouTube channel dedicated to time-lapse videos of ports. Enjoy the view from the boats themselves, gliding past landmarks and other vessels, while listening to relaxing yet squeaky music. Read the rest

Watch an orca drag a boat around by its anchor chain

Boaters in Comox, British Columbia were surprised to find an orca that had been acting strangely in the harbor began pulling a boat around like it was a toy. Read the rest

Autonomous boats in some cities could transport people, shuttle goods, and self-assemble into structures

MIT researchers designed and prototyped small, autonomous boats that they think could go a long way to improving urban mobility and reducing traffic in cities with waterways like Amsterdam, Bangkok, and Venice. The 3D-printed hulls are rectangular to enable them to more easily connect with each other. Each side features an independent thruster to increase its agility. From MIT News:

“Imagine shifting some of infrastructure services that usually take place during the day on the road — deliveries, garbage management, waste management — to the middle of the night, on the water, using a fleet of autonomous boats,” says (MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory) director Daniela Rus, co-author on a paper describing the technology that’s being presented at this week’s IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation.

Moreover, the boats — rectangular 4-by-2-meter hulls equipped with sensors, microcontrollers, GPS modules, and other hardware — could be programmed to self-assemble into floating bridges, concert stages, platforms for food markets, and other structures in a matter of hours. “Again, some of the activities that are usually taking place on land, and that cause disturbance in how the city moves, can be done on a temporary basis on the water,” says Rus, who is the Andrew and Erna Viterbi Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

The boats could also be equipped with environmental sensors to monitor a city’s waters and gain insight into urban and human health.

Read the rest

What happens to nearby streams and rivers when a tanker passes too quickly

Though hardly rekt compilation material, this footage of a feeder river turning into a roiling mess, due to a tanker going through St Lawrence seaway too fast, was good enough to get a captain in trouble and get authorities to enforce the speed limit.

This video was part of a series of videos studied and analyzed by the USCG to determine that the upriver vessels were traveling anywhere from 3 knots to 5 knots over the allowed 8 knot (land relative) upriver limit (10.4 knot water-relative limit) during the shipping season. Speed limits have now been re-enforced throughout the St Lawrence seaway, and the issues shown in this video have since subsided.

Read the rest

Stunning timelapse from a cargo ship on the open sea

From JeffHK, 80,000 photos over 30 days:

Route was from Red Sea -- Gulf of Aden -- Indian Ocean -- Colombo -- Malacca Strait -- Singapore -- South East China Sea -- Hong Kong

Read the rest

This boat is a hot tub and vice versa

The Hot Tub Boat is both at the same time. You can rent one to float around Seattle's Lake Union or custom order your very own from HotTubBoats.com.

"Well, the hot tub boat is fifteen feet over all, she's about six feet wide, about close to 400 gallons of water in the hot tub,” says (Seattle-based co-inventor Adam) Karpenske. “It can take six people on the boat at any time."

"She does her haul speed at about three-and-a-half knots. It's controlled by a little joy stick. Kind of like a lot of people have equated it to ‘if you ever played Pac-man, you can drive the hot tub boat.'"

"Hit the water in a Hot Tub Boat" (King5 via Weird Universe) Read the rest

This footage of the MTS Oceanos sinking is still astounding

In 1991 the crew of the MTS Oceanos abandoned the ship and its passengers to disaster. Overcome by bad weather, and bad decision-making, I believe no lives were lost. Read the rest

Ghost houseboat washes ashore in Ireland

A small houseboat, believed to be that of Canadian eco-adventurer Rick Small, has washed ashore in Ireland after apparently drifting across the Atlantic ocean. It was last spotted in September in Newfoundland, reports the BBC, and there's no sign of Small. Read the rest

Ship returns hail

Honk honk! Read the rest

Where is Captain Cook's HMS Endeavor? Science can almost tell us!

The once famed HMS Endeavor, Captain Cook's ship as he claimed Australia for the British, later renamed something boring and sunk as part of the Royal Navy's blockade of Newport, Rhode Island, has sort of been found! The British scuttled 13 ships to block the harbor, and research has shown a ship formerly known as Endeavor, was sank in a group of 5 recently identified wrecks. One of them is almost certainly Cook's ship.

Via Sky News:

Lead investigator Dr Kathy Abbass told Sky News: "We may have been looking right at her without even knowing it.

"The important thing now is to get the funding so that we can build the facilities to process and house all of the artefacts we must examine to prove which one of the wrecks is Endeavour".

Rhode Island Historical Preservation and Heritage Commission Charlotte Taylor said: "It really isn't easy to explore these sites.

A print from a painting showing Captain James Cook (1728 - 1779) taking possession of New South Wales Captain Cook takes possession of New South Wales

"It takes time, money and effort at each step.

"Divers battle very poor visibility and lots of silt, which is hard to remove and risky to do, because it has essentially been protecting the wood of these ships for hundreds of years."

The group from the Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project hopes to have found and explored the fifth site by this summer.

The Endeavour is one of the most famous ships in naval history.

Read the rest

Britons vote to name $287m research ship "Boaty McBoatface"

After asking the public to decide upon a name for a $287m research ship, Britain's Natural Environment Research Council is feeling stupid, because they've picked "Boaty McBoatface."

“The storm that has been created has got legs of its own,” Mr. Hand told the BBC on Monday, and added that he had submitted Boaty McBoatface in another competition. (For what it’s worth, Mr. Hand voted for the name R.R.S. David Attenborough.)

The research council would not comment on whether it would override the Internet’s suggestion, but Alison Robinson, a spokeswoman, said in an email that the group was “delighted by the enthusiasm and creativity” of people vying for names like Boaty McBoatface. The ship is scheduled to set sail in 2019.

“We’ve had thousands of suggestions made on the website since we officially launched; many of them reflect the importance of the ship’s scientific role by celebrating great British explorers and scientists,” Ms. Robinson said. “We are pleased that people are embracing the idea in a spirit of fun.”

There's something particularly British about "Boaty McBoatface." The way it thinks it's funny and lighthearted and a bit subversive, but the teeth are pressed together just a little too hard for it to be any of those things.

(Just leaving it as "Name of Vessel", on the other hand, would be British in a good way: sarcastic, passive-aggressive, likely to confuse/irritate foreign maritime officials, etc) Read the rest

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