Sunday, January 9, 2011

Captain's Blog 1/9/11

The T.S. Kennedy got underway at 1235 on Sunday, 9 January 2011, sailing with 596 cadets and 98 crew members. The weather was clear after an overnight snow, where about four inches of fluff covered the lawns, the wind was moderate, coming in between 17-22 from the northwest. The Pilots from Northeast Marine Pilots were Captain Clint Walker (MMA '86), Pilot Observer Captain Sean Bogus (MMA '99), and Pilot trainee Pat Donovan (MMA '03). The tugs were provided by Canal Towing and Assist, Captain Arthur Fournier.

Our movement out of the slip went very well. The favorable wind leaving the slip did not affect us once it became an unfavorable wind in the canal. The voyage down Buzzards Bay was uneventful as the cadets became acclimated to the bridge and engine room in full-function. On the bridge there as was a great deal of activity amongst the new officers to make sure they were familiar with the new equipment - especially the new Raytheon Steering System.

Getting away on time every year is the primary focus, since any delays may affect the training cruise schedule including ports and home arrival. Doing so is a small celebration among the ship's permanent crew. Chief Engineer Laffan and Chief Mate Ford lead their department members in a very fast-paced activation. Matt O'Donnell from Marad worked tirelessly, and we had some useful assistance from Tom Bardwell of Bardwell Electronics and Combustion control consultant Danko Dorcic.

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