Outdated Nautical Charts in Arctic

JoK
8th January 2008, 17:58
I wonder what Rob Huebert's nautical background is that CBS is quoting him?!
And no that is not my spelling of Arctic.
The Arctic has probably never been thoroughly surveyed.


Outdated Artic Charts Serve As a Threat
Monday, January 07, 2008

According to cbsnews.com, Melting sea ice has drawn more cruise ship tourists to Canada's Arctic waters, but an Arctic security expert warns that centuries-old navigation charts still in use today could threaten the safety of such vessels and their passengers. Ships still rely on some maritime charts that date back to the voyages of the British Arctic explorer Sir John Franklin in the 1800s, said Rob Huebert, a political science professor at the University of Calgary. Navigational technology was limited in Franklin's time, Huebert said, leading to vague or inaccurate chart measurements. In August 1996, the Hanseatic cruise ship ran aground near Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, as it was carrying tourists in the Northwest Passage. No one was injured in that incident. More recently, the Canadian cruise ship MS Explorer struck an iceberg and sank in the Antarctic on Nov. 23, forcing its 154 passengers and crew including 12 Canadians into lifeboats in the middle of the night. Such cruise-ship accidents rarely happen, so potential northern cruise-goers need not worry. But he said the lack of modern charts is one risk travelers may want to consider.

Geoff_E
8th January 2008, 19:20
Did the cruise ship run aground because of inadequate charts, or poor navigation?

The bit about the "Explorer" is meaningless, striking an iceberg and the quality of charts are not related. Looks like this guy enjoys the sound of his own voice!

There again, if the lack of good charts keeps cruise ships away perhaps it's not a bad thing!

Tony Breach
8th January 2008, 21:07
"Potential northern cruise-goers need not worry". This guy is way back in 1912 methinks.

Tony

Keltic Star
9th January 2008, 07:58
Rob Huebert, a political science professor at the University of Calgary.


Well, that introduction say's it all.
Those who can, do.
Those who can't, teach.

Ron Stringer
9th January 2008, 09:48
Rob Huebert, a political science professor at the University of Calgary.


Well, that introduction say's it all.
Those who can, do.
Those who can't, teach.

And those that can't do either
Become journalists.

Chouan
9th January 2008, 10:29
Thanks Keltic Star and Ron Stringer, thanks for your support and good wishes.
Its good to see that my profession is held in such high regard.
Aside from the sarcasm, is it necessary for you to revert to such childish repetition of such a tired mantra? I think that we would all agree that his remarks are out of place, but I think that you could both be a litlle more selective in your criticism.

athinai
9th January 2008, 11:58
I thought that in this day and age, there would be a 6 hourly ''Surpic'' of the Area transmitted via Satcom/Fax or Whatever Gadget. In the Old days we used to get them in Morse and they were plotted manually.

Cheers/

Irvingman
9th January 2008, 12:58
On charter to the US Air Force in the summer of 1990 supplying a number of the DEW line bases within Foxe Basin and along the northern coast of Baffin Island the charts had quite some limitations.
I understood some of the charts were composites of aerial reconnaissance and older existing charts.
Certainly there were very few depths marked on the charts other than where previous vessels had reported on a specific voyage.
Our positions marked on the chart relative to visable landmarks was often nowhere near a GPS position.
Sorry to sound a bit vague here but I'm speaking as an engineer ([=D]) not a navigator !!!
Still, I found the whole area absolutly fascinating and would love to see it again with a bit more time to explore. (Thumb)

JoK
9th January 2008, 15:33
The Arctic area has never been adequately surveyed as far as I know, other then the regularly travelled routes ( and the fact that in a certain anchorage off of Nanisivik you could pick up TV).

Sister Eleff
9th January 2008, 22:57
Keltic Star & Ron Stringer, your comments are sad but true and can be applied to many professions. I've found that if they can't become journalists, they become unionists - supposedly representing the whole!

Apologies for deviating from the thread here.

Keltic Star
10th January 2008, 05:11
Keltic Star & Ron Stringer, your comments are sad but true and can be applied to many professions. I've found that if they can't become journalists, they become unionists - supposedly representing the whole!

Apologies for deviating from the thread here.

Sorry, I could not resist it, if the "scholar" was an oceanologinst, hydrogapher or similar related scientist, he might have some credibilty, but then again, with such qualifications he probably wouldn't be sitting in Calgary some 1200 miles from the nearest ocean.

Those of us who have sailed in the Arctic are well aware that the charts contain little information but there have been very few incidents involving seasoned professional ice navigators.

The one humorous event that I remember was of a supply boat hitting a well charted sand bar 100 yards off the dock at Tuktuyaktuk. Turned out the crew were all well oiled with engine room distilled moonshine. they would have got away with it had they not radioed for a chopper evac. Base security were not amused.

Chouan
10th January 2008, 11:04
[QUOTE=Keltic Star;176403]Sorry, I could not resist it, if the "scholar" was an oceanologinst, hydrogapher or similar related scientist, he might have some credibilty, but then again, with such qualifications he probably wouldn't be sitting in Calgary some 1200 miles from the nearest ocean.QUOTE]

If you'd said the above I'd have agreed with you, but in making your clever remark above you included me in your sweeping generalisation, which I resent.
Can I assume that you and others that agree with you are all autodidacts?

JoK
10th January 2008, 13:32
autodidacts
A self-taught person.

Thank God for Google :)

Derek Roger
10th January 2008, 16:44
The Arctic area has never been adequately surveyed as far as I know, other then the regularly travelled routes ( and the fact that in a certain anchorage off of Nanisivik you could pick up TV).

I know that my late uncle Arthur Roger was Captain of the DP&L coaster London ( Later sold to Newfoundland interests and became the Topsail Star )

they used to sail up north in summer to Churchill ( 1950 / 60s ) and had no charts ; he was issued with the most recent aerial photographs .

Cheers Derek