BP Tankers Lose Anchors

HENNEGANOL
5th February 2007, 13:35
I found the following report in an Alaskan newspaper!

It doesen't say much for modern manufacturing.

Two of BP's new double-hulled oil tankers are sitting idle off Washington state after each lost an anchor while sailing through rough North Pacific waters, company and Coast Guard officials said Thursday.
An investigation into how the anchors got away revealed "material defects" in the enormous steel claws, said Anil Mathur, president of Alaska Tanker Co., a Beaverton, Ore., company that hauls North Slope crude oil for BP.
Each anchor weighs 16 tons, stands more than 13 feet tall, and hangs at the bow of one of the identical 941-foot ships.
One ship, the Alaskan Navigator, discovered an anchor missing on Dec. 26 and the Alaskan Frontier lost one Dec. 23, Mathur said.
The tankers were hauling crude through rough seas to West Coast refineries when they lost the anchors, Mathur said.
The bodies of the anchors were cracked and that caused them to break off, he said. It wasn't a matter of the anchor chain or coupling breaking.
Exactly where the anchors ended up is a mystery. They're believed to be on the bottom somewhere in the Gulf of Alaska or perhaps in Puget Sound, Mathur said.
The two ships are among four new double-hulled tankers BP had built for $250 million each. The first of the tankers -- built by National Steel and Shipbuilding Co. of San Diego -- began work in the summer of 2004.
The lost anchors are the second glitch to hit the new fleet. In 2005, two of the tankers -- including the Alaskan Frontier -- were laid up for a time because of large cracks in their rudders.
The U.S. Coast Guard is investigating the lost anchors.
"The Coast Guard is absolutely concerned with the problems associated with these anchor failures," said Cmdr. Mark Huebschman in Seattle. But, he added, the Coast Guard also is confident the tanker operator is taking the right steps to protect the ships and the environment.
Mathur said it's rare but not unheard of for a ship to lose an anchor. He said the crew of each tanker discovered the anchor missing after plowing through heavy seas.
"Whenever we have heavy weather, we don't allow anyone on deck," Mathur said. "So once the weather passed and people went to do their rounds, they found the anchors were missing."
Winter weather in the Gulf of Alaska can be ferocious, with the bows of tankers sometimes plowing into enormous swells that send torrents of water cascading down the mesa-sized decks.
The Alaskan Frontier and Alaskan Navigator have unloaded their crude oil cargos and sit empty at Port Angeles, Wash., Mathur said.
Each can carry 1.3 million barrels of crude, or about a day and a half of average North Slope oil production.
The tanker company has scoured the globe for replacement anchors and plans to fly four from Holland to Seattle next week, Mathur said. The ships could be back working in two weeks.
Meantime, the company has four other ships to carry oil and no supply interruptions are expected, said BP spokesman Daren Beaudo.
All remaining anchors in the double-hull fleet will be inspected for problems, Mathur said.

I read in an article by the US Coastguard that the remaining anchors on the ships were also cracked.

Gerry Taylor

jazz606
5th February 2007, 16:58
I remember as a cadet on the Cape York in 1963 we weighed anchor in Singapore to go alongside at Pulau Bukom for bunkers and found that both flukes had sheared off for no apparent reason. We carried a spare (like wot we used to do) and attached that at sea.

JoK
5th February 2007, 17:12
I wonder who stamped them....

Bearsie
5th February 2007, 22:48
I wonder who stamped them....


I think they would be cast, not that casting doesn't have its own problem.
Quite a few possibilities as to what went wrong

Frank P
5th February 2007, 23:05
Aswell as having double hulls, maybe they should have double (2) anchors on each side!!!!! LOL

Frank

JoK
5th February 2007, 23:53
I think they would be cast, not that casting doesn't have its own problem.
Quite a few possibilities as to what went wrong


I am referring to Class

arfabuck
15th December 2008, 08:07
Joined the 'Flag' in dry-dock, Wallsend January '65 as a first trip Nav App. Sailed Abadan F.O. as usual and ended up there anyway.

Laid the port anchor and eased back to the wharf to load.

A day later and time to heave in said lump of metal and sail for somewhere eastern?

NO anchor on the end of the chain!

It took a day of dragging the Shat and re-attaching it. Apparently somebody had forgotten to pin the securing link in dry-dock.

Art

WilliamH
15th December 2008, 08:57
Late in 1976 the MV Connon Forest sailed from Cardiff to Felixstowe, on arrival at Felixstowe, it was noticed that an anchor and all it's cable were missing. The only evidence that it had ever been there was that the,bracket holding the end of the cable in the chain locker, had been torn from the bulkhead. Just another mystery of the sea.

chrishandel
15th December 2008, 20:01
1973. Somewhere under the waves off Durban is the port anchor of the British Statesman. Cut off with hacksaws after breaking free during a storm. Pulled out all of the port chain, broke the coupling in the chain locker and pulled out all the port chain as well.

sidsal
15th December 2008, 21:39
There is a wonderful little book by P M Heaton entitled "The Redbrook- a deep sea tramp" It is about a chap called Lindsay Street who , in the 1960's bought the Saxon Star from Blue Star and renamed her Redbrook.. he operated her from his small Cardiff office as a one ship tramp company. Can you imagine running such a one-man, one ship firm ?
Anyway the story is fascinating but one of the things about the story is that the ship lost several anchors in various parts of the world - for no apparent reason.
P M Heaton was a police sergeant in S Wales who had a great interest in nautical matters and was a prolific writer.. I imagine he must have died as I have not seen or heard of him for years.

Bill Davies
15th December 2008, 21:49
Losing anchors is not such a big thing. I cannot remember whether it was BP or Shell ( I am sure somebody will tell me) who used to insist on securing the 'bitter end' to the chain locker by lashing wire. Experience has proved that it was cheaper to recover the anchor (where possible) than repair the damage caused to the chain locker. I understand Jebel Dhanna was the main influence on this reasoning. John Cann (Capilano) will be able to expand.

non descript
15th December 2008, 22:38
As Bill has wisely observed, it is an easy thing to lose; one minute they are both there, turn you back for a minute and Ooops... (http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/118575/ppuser/3912)(EEK)

DaveO
22nd December 2008, 09:24
I joined the British Patience in July 1977 (first trip E/A) in Milford Haven. On her way round the Cape she had hit bad weather and one of the anchors banged its way into the foc'sle. One of the accommodation ladders and corresponding davits also went over the side.
Sailed from Milford Haven round to Fawley and then back to the Gulf (slow steaming). When we got back to Europe we had to anchor in Lyme Bay until there was room for us in Europoort. A storm hit us and both anchors were put down but we still managed to drag them a bit. When we pulled them up only one anchor appeared. We decided to fit the spare with the help of a local barge.
A brand new strop was found and the spare anchor lifted on the Sampson post. As anyone with any rigging experience will tell you when you first load up a brand new strop it tends to unwind. (I was once installing a 10,000 gallon glass lined tank in Dow Chemicals in Londonderry. Unbeknown to me the mobile crane had fittied a new wire for this lift and the same thing happened. The tank swung round and hit the crane causing very expensive damage). And so it happened here. A 50 ton anchor spinning in the wind. Someone had the bright idea of lassooing one of the flukes bit was dissuaded when it was pointed out he was likely to end up over the side. When it finally stopped spinning we lowered it onto the barge alonside which promptly started to sink. We managed to get the anchor back on the deck, dropping the shaft which made a bit of a bang and got permission to sail for Europoort with only one anchor.
Happy days !

Ron Stringer
22nd December 2008, 16:58
....and so did Shell Tankers.

Passing through the Kiel Canal on the ''San Florentino'' heading for Northern Sweden with a full cargo, someone had the idea of 'bumping' one of the anchors on the bottom whenever we had to slow down (single screw steam turbine). Fine in theory but when it was tried in practice, the hook grabbed the bottom, followed by a horrendously loud noise as the chain ran out and down the side of the bow. The forecastle disappeared in a cloud of rust and dried mud particles (from which appeared the Chinese deck crew running for their lives), followed shortly afterwards by a loud bang and silence. Chippy had screwed down the brake, the chain had snapped and the anchor plus several cables of chain were almost instantaneously transferred to the bottom of the canal.

Very embarrassed mate was the result but the rest of us were relieved that we had not run onto the flukes of our own anchor. We were happy enough to spend half a day at anchor in Keil Bay, waiting for a tug to fish for the anchor and chain and, having recovered it, bring it back to us. When it did appear, some time before dawn the next day, we all feared for the tug's safety because they had the anchor on the fantail with the cable looped around the accommodation, running along the deck up to the forecastle and then aft, down the deck opposite side. Obviously there had been an uneven number of loops, causing such a list that the deck was almost awash on one side.

From the attitudes of the crew of the tug, it was all in a day's work to them.

Steve Woodward
22nd December 2008, 20:34
A couple of pictures of the recovery of a VLCC anchor (27 tons) and chain are HERE ( http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=44904) and HERE (http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=44905)

PeterDD
15th November 2009, 11:54
BP Tankers did not have much luck with anchors. The River class had a nasty habit of getting them jammed in the hawse pipe. As 2/0 on the Dart I was sent up for forard to pick up the anchor after an emergency anchoring in the Thames following an engine malfunction. I had just joined the ship in the Isle of Grain so was not aware of the anchor problem. Previous experience on other ships had been to heave the anchor home good and tight to stop any banging. As I did this on the Dart I noticed a white mark on the cable. I asked the bridge what this meant and was told that "we never heave the cable in passed that mark!" Too late - I had the cable home and secure. We were bound for Lisbon and there the C/O decided we could pull the anchor back out by passing a good wire round it to the bollard on the jetty, then as we disharged the weight would come on the wire and pull the anchor free. Simples!! Time moved on, the cargo went out the wire got tighter. The "jettywallah" showed some concern - so we were instructed to walk up and down the ship on the offshore side. Time moved, on nothing happening. "Right", says the C/O," list the ship away from the jetty, that'll fix it". This was duly done and suddenly there was an all mighty bang. Brilliant the anchor was free - er, no the anchor was still in the pipe but the bollard was sheared off!!! So we gave that up and after discharge went and anchored off Lisbon dry dock. Tried to tow the anchor out with a tug - but the ship just followed the tug! In the end the anchor had to be cut out. The problem appeared to be that the anchor stock was too long for the hawse pipe and when pulled up, jammed across it. Happy days!!?

Peter

joebuckham
15th November 2009, 12:49
during a bit of shabby weather, one winter weekend the wind was piping norwest and we, the hartlepool pilots, were waiting for a little scuffler, called tramp, if my memory serves me true, coming from the south. her eta passed and no sign. we called and called over the weekend, the agent put out a message and received a reply that he was having great trouble doing any speed against the head winds.
monday morning, about 36 hours after his original eta, he said he was passing whitby and would be there in about 6 or 7 hours. this completely baffled us, as although there was still a bit of northerly sea running the wind had dropped right away and he only had 24 or so miles to go. when he arrived at the pilot station the pilot went out and, as he approached, he asked the master to get his anchor up quickly as he was going through the locks and the dock were attempting to hold a level for him..... "but i have'nt got an anchor down pilot" was his firm reply. yes!!!, no prizes for guessing, he had run all the way up the coast, unknowingly, with one anchor and cable on the bitter end, and he was right he did'nt have an anchor down, it was long gone.(Thumb)

Billieboy
15th November 2009, 14:04
Repairs always seemed to come in threes or fours, if the phone rang on a Friday afternoon for a boiler, then there would be two more by Monday afternoon. This was the same with liner changes, windlass brakes, rudders and anchors. One month in the mid eighties I had no less than six anchor jobs come along one after another. I didn't mind, but every one was a completely different problem, from anchor shackle led fractures to fluke loss, swivel failure(?), and complete loss of everything, leaving a bit of mending in the chain locker.

Klaatu83
15th November 2009, 14:18
We never trusted solely to the riding pawls and devils claws provided by the ship builders to secure our anchors for sea. We always fitted additional chains or wire cables, tightened with turnbuckles, for additional security. However, I can't imagine how one could provide against an anchor breaking off at the shank. I suppose the crews and the owners ought to be glad that the broken anchors didn't penetrate the hulls. that would have been a REAL disaster!

sidsal
19th November 2009, 14:36
Just after ww2 a Brocklebanl ship was in ( I believe ) Queens dock on the Clyde and was being towed by a single tug aft sternfirst into the river. A marine super called Cadwaladr had been on board and had motored round to the knuckle where the dock met the river and stood there to watch her out.
As she went astern the wind caught her bow and she sheered towards the knuckle.
The mate and "chippy" were on the focsle head and the pilot decided she was going to strike the knuckle so he shouted - "Let go the port anchor"
Unfortunately chippy let go the starboard anchor just as the bow sheer overhung the knuckle and the anchor dropped neatly onto the dock in a cloud of rust. Calwaladr hoofed it out of the way.
You can just see it can't you ?

trevflstn
19th November 2009, 20:51
Sailed on the British Esk with Captain Cliffe (otherwise known as Jasper) who had a habit of repeating what was said to him.
One evening in the middle of a very bouncy North Sea sitting watching a movie. Phone rings: Captain Cliffe answers, says Oh the anchor has just let itself go and then sits down again.
Very short silence and then I don't think I have ever seen anybody move so fast in my life.
Luckily the daywork mate got volunteered to go forward and recover the anchor and I just had to watch him get soaked from the bridge.

Sheddy
12th April 2010, 15:19
1973. Somewhere under the waves off Durban is the port anchor of the British Statesman. Cut off with hacksaws after breaking free during a storm. Pulled out all of the port chain, broke the coupling in the chain locker and pulled out all the port chain as well.


I remember that, I was there. Lots of head scratching over that one, with all the cable hanging out of the hawse pipe. Tried lifting it with the windlass - no chance- and in the end steamed into shallower water off Durban.

Thought it was an April fools joke when we were told to cut it with a hacksaw.
Ah happy days

chrishandel
13th April 2010, 17:55
Sheddy - were you there when she broke down for 2 weeks in the Gulf? Or when she dumped oil in the water in Milford Haven, Rotterdam and some French place? What a ship..................................

Allan James
14th April 2010, 11:42
There is a wonderful little book by P M Heaton entitled "The Redbrook- a deep sea tramp" It is about a chap called Lindsay Street who , in the 1960's bought the Saxon Star from Blue Star and renamed her Redbrook.. he operated her from his small Cardiff office as a one ship tramp company. Can you imagine running such a one-man, one ship firm ?
Anyway the story is fascinating but one of the things about the story is that the ship lost several anchors in various parts of the world - for no apparent reason.
P M Heaton was a police sergeant in S Wales who had a great interest in nautical matters and was a prolific writer.. I imagine he must have died as I have not seen or heard of him for years.

I was working in Cardiff a few years ago and had to have a "little chat" with the owner of a piece of rough ground being used as a parking area. In his office was a number of photos of an old merchant ship, we finished our chat and got around to the photos of the ship, turns out that he was the one time owner of the "Redbrook". Don't think he is there any more as the land has been redeveloped, otherwise I'd have to go back and reaquaint myself with him!

Sheddy
12th November 2013, 08:24
Sheddy - were you there when she broke down for 2 weeks in the Gulf? Or when she dumped oil in the water in Milford Haven, Rotterdam and some French place? What a ship..................................

I was 3/O when she dumped oil into the harbour of Milford Haven -- Must be one of the few occasions when a ship has had an overflow whilst discharging - If my memory serves me right the pumproom had been set up wrong, and a drop valve had been left in the open position.
Insurance and Supt. sailed with the ship for a week after trying to establish the cause.
Other bit of memory:- when the trip wire was pulled to stop the pumps the wire was connected to nothing.
Communication between pumproom and ER was by banging on bulkhead with a hammer.
French place was somewhere called ******* - Sur --Mer ? A supt. called John Titherage ? joined there to try and sort out the problems onboard.

Duncan112
12th November 2013, 13:55
Fos Sur Mer - port for Marsailles

Sheddy
14th November 2013, 11:52
Fos Sur Mer - port for Marsailles

No not there it was up on the Brittany Coast.