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Thread: Tractor boat unloading fail - GIF

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    Jon
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    Tractor boat unloading fail - GIF


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    Supporting Member Frank S's Avatar
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    When off loading from vessel like this once you start moving you go, go, go never hesitate you don't speed up you don't slow down and you don't stop.
    that being said the boat captain is the one really at fault here for not taking on ballast once t he ship was beached. it is clear the ship was not real large otherwise just the change in weight of a medium sized tractor would not have caused much a change in buoyancy, all the more reason to take on ballast or at the very least maintain a forward thrust from the engines. The bank dropped off quite sharply making all the more necessary to maintain a positive contact.
    Edit One thing I did note was just as the tractor was going in the water the boats engines were engaged but as soon as the front tires hit the water the boat accelerated in reverse.
    I don't understand why the 4 wheel drive wasn't used. this may have helped to pull the tractor instead of push the boat. even if the draw bar had hung on the deck as it appeared the boat could have pushed itself back to the bank wen things settled down they could have taken on water to lower the boats buoyancy and freed the tractor.
    Last edited by Frank S; Sep 28, 2019 at 12:58 AM.
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    Didn't help that the tractor operator threw it into reverse to attempt getting back onto the boat. I agree on the use of four wheel drive and just go until you either make it or you don't. Also if he'd have started more towards the middle of the boat headed towards the shore there would have been less push on the boat to overcome with boat motors.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cabinover View Post
    Didn't help that the tractor operator threw it into reverse to attempt getting back onto the boat. I agree on the use of four wheel drive and just go until you either make it or you don't. Also if he'd have started more towards the middle of the boat headed towards the shore there would have been less push on the boat to overcome with boat motors.
    I'm pretty sure his biggest mistake was being hesitant then gunning it.
    if he is like either of my dogs or cats that have been bitten by rattlesnakes, will know better the next time
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    As a non-mariner (at least since I was a boat boy on a mountain lake in California 70 years ago) it seems to me that the simplest and most positive strategy would have been to simply tie the boat to a couple of trees on the shore before offloading the tractor.

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    Supporting Member jdurand's Avatar
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    The couple of times I was on a tug with a barge they just ran the barge against the shore and kept the tug's engines pushing against the tug.

    It had the side advantage of the automated tracker saying we were still under way even if not actually moving. Lets you park a barge at a small pleasure craft ramp late at night without anyone asking questions.

    No, not contraband, just dropping off crew close to home at the end of the day.

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    Supporting Member Frank S's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdurand View Post
    The couple of times I was on a tug with a barge they just ran the barge against the shore and kept the tug's engines pushing against the tug.

    It had the side advantage of the automated tracker saying we were still under way even if not actually moving. Lets you park a barge at a small pleasure craft ramp late at night without anyone asking questions.

    No, not contraband, just dropping off crew close to home at the end of the day.
    that's the way they do work barges when they have to load long materials from broadsides sometimes a dozer would even push dirt up to the side to make a pair of ramps near either end.
    Almost certain that given enough tugs all pushing at the same time they would move an entire island off its footing.
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    But jdurand, tugs typically have thousands of horsepower because their jobs are pushing large boats, barges, and ships. This little powered river barge probably had a few hundred HP or less for river transport of modest loads. Additionally, it looks like the rear of the barge lifted out of the water as the load pushed the bow down, thus losing thrust at the critical moment. Alternatively, the spray at the stern may have resulted simply from the rearward thrust of the boat by the tractor. Strangely, the barge drifted slowly away from the shore after dumping its load onto shore and then into the water. Hopefully the barge captain cut power to avoid plowing into the occupied cabin of the submerged tractor. But it does make one wonder at what point the power was cut. Note that, whatever the boat thrust was doing (we don't know) the only visible restraint holding the boat to the shore was one man standing on sand holding onto the bow of the boat. I think that's the biggest clue to the failure. I can understand the motivation of the boat operator to save time by avoiding tying up to the shore and just using engine thrust instead, but what a waste of energy to substitute engine thrust for the simple act of tying up.

    I'm reminded of the time I was tasked with measuring noise in the engine room of a newly commissioned Mississippi River tugboat. After my measurements were completed I was on deck relaxing until we would reach a point where I could disembark. The tug was at full power (easily many thousand horsepower) progressing upstream against the current at a choke point in the river and people on the shore path were strolling along at about the same speed. I have no idea of how the logistics could be arranged, but I'm confident that pulling the tug with a winch above the choke point would have saved an enormous amount of fuel. Had the river flow been one or two miles per hour faster our large fuel consumption would have netted us nothing.



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