I was on "Sevonia Team", 103,000 dwt OBO carrying iron ore from Peru to Korea in 1978 when we went into the heavy weather surrounding a typhoon off Japan at that time. The circumstances were probably just like those experienced by the "Derbyshire" just two years later. I was only a 19 year old first trip deck cadet, and even on such a large ship, it took alot to scare me. But lying in my bunk at night, in the dark, feeling the ship crashing into the waves I was pretty scared. Even 29 years later I remember thinking, here we go again, as every minute or so we would hit a big one. Even 700 feet or so aft of the bows you could feel the shock through the hull, the flexing of the steel, and the pitching downwards. Time and again I thought as we tilted down, is this the one, the one where the bow caves in, and we just slip down and down into the fathomless depths of the Pacific Ocean. https://www.shipsnostalgia.com/galler...00/ppuser/8383
With the iron ore sitting deep in the ship forming a great pendulum, dense piles of weight sitting centrally in each hold, you knew the ship was pretty stressed. None of us know exactly what happened to the Derbyshire, but I will not be alone on this website in knowing what it was like to go close to the point of disaster, that fine line between life and death.
In some ways that was all part of the thrill of going to sea as a boy, and returning a man, having seen the world.