Originally Posted by mullethunt
I recall these ships having bow thrusters. Often when coming into Charleston one main or thruster or one main and thruster were not operational thus requiring escort to navigate the many turns to berth.
They had, as Varley says, one bowthruster of about 1000 hp. They were often out of action due to mechanical failure of some kind, and one actually fell off on passage.
In addition Seatrain chose to put riding squads on board to modify the demisters on one engine at a time whilst coasting between New York and Charleston.
It was therefore quite common to arrive in Charleston with one engine and (maybe) a bow thruster.
There was one quite tight turn to starboard just after the bridge, and trying to turn to starboard with just the port engine, a single centre line rudder and a very large unpowered starboard cp propeller just in front of it ruining the flow could be ..... tricky.
Then one of them went aground and was stuck for several hours, confining a small fleet of nuclear subs and other naval vessels to their berths until she could be refloated.
The manure was now well and truly in the fan and questions were asked very far up the chain in the US government.
Consequently any Euro boat arriving with less than 2 out of 3 'propellers' was obliged to take a tug.
When the work on the demisters was finished it all went back to normal, they had two engines and since the bow thrusters were ineffective at anything over a couple of knots, it didn't matter over much whether it was available or not.
Also by that time the pilots had learned to ignore the fact that they had two props and handle them like a conventional single screw/single rudder ship.