End of an era - Ships Nostalgia

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End of an era

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Old 2nd December 2013, 22:10
5036's Avatar
5036 5036 is offline  
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End of an era


The end of the mighty Weijsmuller "Typhoon." Ended her life as Gudri and apparently broke mooring lines whilst alongside unmanned. She drifted off getting damaged along the way and settling in shallow water turned on her side.

Spookily, "Tempest" her sistership is on her way to the breakers.

These 1976 built sisterships were revolutionary in their day and were on full time charter to Shell Expro as field tugs for the first part of their lives, Tempest continuing until the '90's. Shell released them for several installation tow outs of large concrete platforms for which they were modified with their revolutionary pusher nose. They were also upgraded with fire monitors and were among the first vessels to have hydraulic pins and sharks jaws.

They were famous and popular with great skippers such as Peter Schwartz whose English on the VHF was tinged with a Norfolk accent thanks to his wife. I spent many happy days aboard these astounding little ships laying anchors and buoys and using them on tows. I recall one tow where we had Tempest on the starboard bow anchor and Star Pisces on the port. The tension meter for the Pisces was jumping around as we towed into a full gale whilst the Tempest's was almost flat lined.

The design was so good that in 2002 the design was used as the base for the HARMS tug "Primus."

In 2003 "Port Said" was built for the Suez Canal Authority.

The Fairplay 32 and 33 built in 2011 are similarly based on the redoubtable Tempest and Typhoon.

Some nostalgia and the famous pins here at 2 mins:

RIP Tempest and Typhoon.

Last edited by 5036; 2nd December 2013 at 23:51..
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Old 6th December 2013, 00:05
tony Allard's Avatar
tony Allard tony Allard is offline  
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it is a sad time to see such iconic vessels end up as scrap. same fate for the london and rotterdam.
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Old 21st March 2014, 15:56
kees de ru kees de ru is offline  
Join Date: Dec 2009
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The Tempest, as Indus, is today still working Offshore Lagos.

I made my last voyage prior to retirement in 2009 onboard Typhoon.

Last edited by kees de ru; 21st March 2014 at 15:59..
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Old 11th October 2019, 10:19
DxbBob DxbBob is offline
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Post TYPHOON life saving services in August 1991

Whenever I see a reference to Bureau Wijsmuller's AHT TYPHOON, I'm reminded of the rescue services she provided when McDERMOTT DERRICK BARGE No. 29 sank trying to outrun tropical cyclone Fred on Thursday morning 15 August 1991. TYPHOON had the combination derrick/pipe lay barge in tow 65 miles off Hong Kong headed towards a cyclone mooring in the mouth of the Pearl River (Zhujiang in Chinese) when the tow line parted. The tug's repeated attempts to recover her tow were unsuccessful. Once the tow line parted, the drifting barge turned broadside to the whipped up waves and her rolling progressively worsened, causing a pair of steel anchor pendant buoys lashed on deck to break loose, roll forth and back across the deck, slamming over and over again into a hatch cover, eventually holing it. The barge began to take on water at a rate and volume which overcame her pumps. In no time she capsized and slowly sank in 210' of water. When the barge turned turtle, TYPHOON immediately commenced search and rescue operations in the 25' seas and 75 knot winds. Her operations required unrelenting demonstration of the highest standards of seamanship. When TYPHOON finally cleared into Hong Kong that Thursday night she had 84 survivors aboard. Another 87 crew members were rescued by vessels from China, Taiwan, the Soviet Union and Hong Kong, and by Hong Kong based SAR helicopters. 24 personnel perished.
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