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Spectacular Raft Drill in Hawaii

This post was submitted by Cadet Daan Wester of Zaandam.

On the 10th of October there was a regular scheduled crew raft drill in sunny and picturesque Nawiliwili, Kauai, Hawaii.

It was again the regular weekly raft drill, but this time not so regular as normal. This time the persons from 4 raft stations did not muster at the regular raft station but at the aft Lido deck. The drill was held around and in the aft Lido pool. There were four different stations, each with an officer or cadet who gave an explanation/training about a safety or lifesaving item. The first station was an explanation by 3rd Officer Rob Hughes about emergency communication. VHFs and other communication devices were used and demonstrated.

The second station was an explanation by Cadet Daan Wester about lifejackets. He talked about how to wear the lifejacket properly and how to step in to the water while wearing a lifejacket. To ensure that everyone understands it, Daan or a volunteer stepped in to the pool to show how to get into the water in a safe way.

The 3rd station was about fire blankets and was given by 2nd Officer Duncan Holroyd. He explained and demonstrated how to use one and what the hazards are for incorrect usage.

The final and 4th station was all about how to enter an inflatable life raft from the water and was given by 1st Officer Jan Westerbeek. I think that was the most spectacular instruction. An inflatable 12-person life raft was afloat in the pool and crew members had to step in to the pool and then get in to the raft. 1st officer Jan managed it every time again to get four volunteers to get wet by stepping into the pool and get in to the life raft.

Some of the volunteers were the Chief Engineer Denny and Executive Chief Martin. Of course 1/O Jan Westerbeek did give the correct example by stepping into the pool in his Kaki uniform and with an inflatable lifejacket which did work correctly.

The raft commander and an assistant had to pull the victims from the water into the raft, which is not an easy job.

All raft crew have to rotate clockwise till they had all finished the 4 different stations. The whole drill took around 40 minutes.

I think it was a great drill, well organized and all the crew members did enjoy the drill and did gain some practical experience that day.

1 Comment
  • Gwen Roach

    I remember watching the boat drill when I was on the Statendam in November 2001 and in fact have a couple of pictures. I thoroughly enjoyed that trip.

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