10 June 2001 - Newcastle and the dry dock
RRS James Clark Ross Diary
Noon Position: A&P Tyne Dry Docks, Newcastle.
There was no update to the RRS James Clark Ross web page last week because Thursday 31 May was the day that Captain Elliotís crew went on leave handing the ship over to Captain Burgan's team.
On Friday 1 June the ship sailed the short passage from Grimsby to A&P Tyne dry docks in Newcastle for her annual refit. The dry dock allows work to be done on the ship that is not possible whilst the ship is afloat. This is a very busy time for all onboard.
Before the ship can enter the dry dock, the dock has to be prepared. Blocks are carefully placed to support the ship without damaging it; care must be taken because of all the science instruments on the hull. Once the blocks have been positioned, the dock is flooded and the ship is carefully manoeuvred in. Getting the ship into the dock is a difficult manoeuvre so the ship was assisted by two tugs. When the ship is in position in the dock, the water is pumped out leaving the ship high and dry. Now the work begins...
The refit this year is going to be six weeks long but only the first two weeks are in the dry dock, the other four weeks will be on a lay-by berth.
During the two weeks that the ship is in dry dock, the work done will include inspecting and painting the hull, polishing the propeller, cleaning the sea water intakes, surveying ballast and fuel tanks, renewing wires on the lifeboats, overhauling parts of the aft and midships gantries. The list goes on!
If all this works goes as planned we should be afloat again on Saturday 16 June.