A merchant marine captured life at sea on a video tour of a Maersk cargo ship.
The video shows the technology that helps guide the ship, as well as the crews’ living quarters.
Second mate Bryan Boyle said his work has given him the opportunity to explore numerous destinations.
Though the video was taken in 2019, Boyle told Insider it provides insight into the lives of shipping crew today as hundreds of cargo ships wait to dock in US ports.
In the ship’s voyage, it sets out from Norfolk, Virginia, making several stops in the US before setting out to Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands, to name a few destinations.
“I’ve had the opportunity to work on some interesting vessels,” Boyle told Insider. “I’ve gotten to go to places that the average person wouldn’t even know about. It’s one of the most appealing aspects of the job.”
Boyle said that there’s a thrill to arriving in new destinations, remembering how he spent over a month in Africa on one trip. However, the amount of time that crews get to explore new destinations has dwindled over the years, he said, as ships rush to get in and out of ports as fast as possible and early COVID-19 restrictions set limits to crew excursions.
The video shows Boyle’s living quarters, as well as a movie locker that holds hundreds of titles.
Entertainment options for the ship’s crew of 20 to 25 people are limited on the cargo ships. Boyle said that workers’ time off can include a mix of movies and games, as well as gym-time.
The video shows the officers’ lounge, which has a ping pong table and TV, as well as the general crews’ lounge, which has a poker table. Boyle explained that during the pandemic crew were even further limited on the activities they could pursue onboard.
“Many ships were not allowed to eat with fellow crew mates or go to the gym,” Boyle told Insider. “You were only allowed in your room or work area.”
Take a look at a view of the crew’s mess hall below.
The video also highlights the mix of old and new technology that helps keep the supply chain moving, pairing engine control rooms that look like they belong on a space ship with a massive gyro compass.
The navigation bridge also provides an unrestricted view of the waters ahead and operates as a space where the captain and officers can man the entire operations of the vessel.
The ship has a massive gyro compass that helps guide its course.
The first seaworthy gyro compass was produced in 1908. It operates as a type of non-magnetic compass that uses a fast-spinning disc and the rotation of the Earth to find geographical direction.
The video shows the engine room and the massive combustion engine that helps power an equally-giant propeller.
Boyle takes viewers on a tour of the exterior of the ship as well, labeling individual parts of the ship and even touring the ship’s life boat.
The video ends by showing how the ship pulls up to a dock in Germany.
Massive cranes discharge 20-foot containers from the ship. More cranes gradually reload fresh containers before the Maersk Ohio ship heads back to Norfolk, Virginia.
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