Winter ship rituals

January 21, 2015

Ocean Intrepid breaks ice, preparing for the arrival of Oceanex Avalon in Montreal As most know, the winters in Canada can be somewhat challenging. In the Great Lakes area, the winter of 2013-2014 was particularly good example of that statement, with record ice covering all of the Great Lakes and their inter-connecting rivers, well past the normal “ice season”. Some ships on Lake Superior even experienced breaking ice in late…

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Where’s the money from ?

August 24, 2014

Davie Yard on the St Lawrence River near Quebec City In previous posts we explore the rebound and challenges of Davie Shipyard. The venerable shipyard, established 192 years ago sits across from Quebec City, on the St Lawrence River.  The shipyard is projecting a confident air about them, recently delivering a complex offshore construction vessel to European operators, with two more being completed, and two other ships on contract. Running…

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Davie is Goliath – for now

August 17, 2014

Davie’s recently launched Cecon Pride The past twist and turns, ups and downs, of Davie Shipyard in Quebec City are legendary and certainly worthy of its own book. However, the yard is actually on what appears to be, quite a rebound.  The yard, established 192 years ago, was re-launch in 2012 after a tumultuous decade of financial woes. The revival is steered by a new management team supplied by European…

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Evans’ riveting story

January 17, 2014

Evans McKeil We are just wrapping up cargo operations in Hamilton, the cargo is of wheat, lightered off the grounded Orsula, off Cape Vincent in late December. The ship made it to Montreal albeit with some damage to her propeller, but the “salvaged” cargo has been a long experience on its own, challenged by numerous weather, and “administrative” fronts. My workplace, and home, for this particular adventure has been the…

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The hammer drops (on Canadian cabotage)

July 25, 2012

McCleary’s Spirit, loaded, in Quebec My gut is big, and not necessarily pretty, but its usually accurate when it comes to intuition. I felt that any day now we would have work for our ship, a product tanker, or something drastic would happen. Well, as it turns out, the latter happened. If you follow this blog, you’ll recalled that the ship I sail on was recently been laid up in…

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First day of the 2012 navigational season

March 23, 2012

Welland Canal It was a bright sunny day, unseasonably warm in Port Weller today. Port Weller is ten minutes outside downtown St Catherines, in southern Ontario. It is home to Lock One of the Welland Canal, part of the St Lawrence Seaway System, connecting the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Ocean using the various lakes and the St Lawrence River. Today marked the official opening of the 2012 navigational season…

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Firemen on the barge

March 10, 2012

St Catherines FD rope rescue exercise from McClearys Spirit – M. Leduc Well, I just made it back to the shipyard a couple of days ago. A brief time at home this time, had to come back and make sure we are on track to complete all of our projects, while our time in the shipyard draws to a close, and the beginning of the trading season starts on the…

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2012 part 3 – Big plans

February 6, 2012

Continued from 2012 part 2 – From sea to sea to sea The big news of the 2011 was probably the National Ship Procurement Strategy. The much heralded NSPS is a great step forward, in the fact that the government recognized, after decades of neglect, that they need to build ships; then went on to try to figure out how to do it. A major accomplishment, but at the end…

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