In their spare time, some of our scientists have offered to help out with the routine tasks and activities on deck!
By Victoire Lucas
Between our two shifts of the day, we have about 9 hours of free time that we can use the way we want. During those breaks we can, if we wish so, give a hand and help a bit on the deck. Of course, we are not seamen and seawomen of experience yet, and there are some activities we can’t help with for safety reasons. But there are always ways to be useful, and here are two examples.
Last week, with my shift mate Matthew Griffiths, we went to the emergency generator room to help with the maintenance of this engine. This maintenance is done once a week by Michael Hill (aka “Mike”), the electrician onboard. We helped Mike take a look around, check that everything was ready before testing the emergency generator: check the level of fuel in the tank, the level of oil in the generator, make sure that the vent was open etc. Mike explained how all of this works and we were able to do the maintenance following the protocol. After that, Matt and I received a very fancy diploma of “Honorary Marine Engineer” (Mum, I hope you’re proud of me). Under good supervision such as Mike’s, everybody can help!
Another way to help is by painting the metal pieces on the upper deck. Indeed, there are many things that need a fresh new paint onboard, such as the hand rails and the cranes. We can help by painting the two coats of primer and then the coats of color paint. That way, the paint will protect those objects against the seawater and last longer.
|Morgane and I enjoying some time up on deck!
We of course have safety rules to follow: wear gloves and safety glasses all the time, and don’t go outside of the hand rails so we don’t risk to fall overboard. It is a fun activity that we can do in teams of two or three, and it’s nice to be working out there, watching the ocean. I usually paint one hour and half in the morning, and about two hours in the afternoon, this activity keeps me busy and it’s a good thing!
I hope I will have time to paint many more hand rails before our arrival in Seattle. Now when I see the Langseth, I can say to myself “I’ve been participating in this!” and it makes me very proud.