At the beginning of this project we went beach cleaning to do our best to help getting rid of the macro-waste left by people on beaches and we learned that most of the pollution comes from the land and human activities. Rubbish is carried on to the sea by rivers, streams, brooks and rain.
We know that the sea is at risk too because of the boats cruising our shores. These vessels are huge and carry very dangerous products with toxic chemical elements, thousands of boxes with all sorts of goods, radioactive waste and oil .
In 1978, there was an enormous oil spill on our coast. One too many, and that one was so dreadful that everybody kept it in mind. The Amoco Cadiz oil spill traumatized people over here, and our maritime environment was deeply, deeply hurt.
You must know that 150 boats a day enter the Channel, next to where we live. The tugboat we visited is there to help the monstruous vessels in case they get into trouble; The sailors on board are on watch 365 days a year, 24 hours out of 24 hours.
On friday morning ( june 14th, 2013), we went on board and met her crew, starting with the Tug Master Charles Claden on the bridge watch.
After meeting Captain Claden, we went down to the engine room. Jean-Paul Hellequin, our “private” guide, showed us the four engines which can develop 24.000 horsepower when needed.
We also went into the kitchen, a strategic place to keep the crew’s morale at its highest 😉
Victor was very hungry and found out the cook was preparing fresh crab to eat with mayonnaise , sea bream ( a delicious fish) and we all saw nice chocolate cakes 😉 😉
Then, we went out to have a look at the cables used to tow boats in trouble at sea.
Wow! The size of the cable ! Mr Delaunay, in charge, showed us the cables and how they do to throw the tow to the vessels at risk.
A message to the crew of this great tugboat and to Mr Jean Paul Hellequin.
Thank you very much for that lovely visit and the great, great welcome we had on board. We were very impressed by your kind willingness to share your experience with us. You are our “rock stars” as someone said during the visit 😉
Thank you Captain Claden for your specific dedication to our blog.
Have a look at the video, to the end 😉 It is in French but you can understand it .