huge bomb ship in the Yemen

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plodder
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huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by plodder » Thu Oct 07, 2021 10:46 am

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2021 ... ame-a-bomb

to be filed under “f.cking hell”

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bjn
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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by bjn » Thu Oct 07, 2021 12:12 pm

that was an entertaining lunchtime read.

eek.

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by plodder » Thu Oct 07, 2021 12:35 pm

I know, bit of a toe curler over your sandwiches...

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by FlammableFlower » Thu Oct 07, 2021 12:35 pm

:shock:

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by temptar » Thu Oct 07, 2021 1:09 pm

I find that fascinating on several levels

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by Martin_B » Thu Oct 07, 2021 10:36 pm

And you lot don't realise that this is the kind of sh.t I deal with every day (OK, usually on a smaller scale). ;)
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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by plodder » Fri Oct 08, 2021 2:23 am

Martin_B wrote:
Thu Oct 07, 2021 10:36 pm
And you lot don't realise that this is the kind of sh.t I deal with every day (OK, usually on a smaller scale). ;)
so with this one, what’s the plan, stan?

something like

a) bribe the rebels
b) clear the mines
c) set up a bund
d) ????
e) safely siphon the oil
f) tow it away to get broken up

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Martin_B
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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by Martin_B » Fri Oct 08, 2021 9:00 am

plodder wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 2:23 am
Martin_B wrote:
Thu Oct 07, 2021 10:36 pm
And you lot don't realise that this is the kind of sh.t I deal with every day (OK, usually on a smaller scale). ;)
so with this one, what’s the plan, stan?

something like

a) bribe the rebels
b) clear the mines
c) set up a bund
d) ????
e) safely siphon the oil
f) tow it away to get broken up
a) Not sure who the Houthi will take money off, how much they want, or even if the Houthis realise that they have the boat at all. Possibly not a very good way of trying to resolve the situation. Offering them guns might work, and that's always gone down very well in the past.

b) Well, the Houthis might try and shoot at you as you try and clear the mines, but the good thing is most minesweepers have some form of weaponry to shoot back. I'm not sure if you want to end up shooting weapons or setting off mines that near a vessel which is only vaguely seaworthy.

c) Would have to be a big bund, considering the ~million barrels of oil on board. Bunds only go on the surface and oil spreads out fantastically well. Oh, and the mines might get in the way. And the Houthis might shoot at you.

d) I think this is stop the Yemen War, isn't it?

e) Is the best option, but the Houthis don't seem to want people to be able to do this. Probably need d) done first.

f) Once e) has been done, yes. It should have been scrapped years ago, but Yemen isn't that rich a country that it could afford to scrap vaguely seaworthy vessels and replace them with newer double-skinned tankers to operate as an FSO. Without a war the vessel could have had basic maintenance which would allow it to remain seaworthy, although even in the best of situations it would be coming to the end of it's life around now.

So you need to either:

Stealthily avoid the mines, board the vessel, disconnect the pipeline from shore, fix and fire up the boilers, clear the mines, and sail the very large and only vaguely seaworthy VLCC past the rest of the Yemeni coast into the open sea and to a port where you can unload the oil, or;

Stop the Yemen War (possibly a ceasefire would do) and get a major repair team onto the vessel where they can arrange enough repairs to unload the oil and then scrap the empty hull.

But frankly more dangerous cargo gets shipped round the world all the time. The loss of the inert gas for the Safer might actually be a bit of a blessing - the more volatile components will have vented off by now, especially if the temperature below decks has reached ~120°F, and what's left in the tanks might just be heavy crude; nasty if it spills, but not as likely to explode.
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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by plodder » Fri Oct 08, 2021 10:41 am

f.cking hell, "gently warm the tanker to simmering point" hadn't occurred to me as a sensible safety measure

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by Fishnut » Fri Oct 08, 2021 11:11 am

That was quite the read. There seems to be no plausible best-case scenario. I can't imagine what it must be like to live on that ship, knowing that any minute it could explode.
it's okay to say "I don't know"

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by tenchboy » Fri Oct 08, 2021 11:54 am

Hmmm, maybe just to make a change from the annual Dead Pool we could do a Bomb Ship Kaboom Pool.
This one versus the Edmund Fitzgerald* in the Medway/Thames Estuary and or indeed any others; there must be others

* Yeah I know it's not that, The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald is a folk song covered by Gordon Giltrap, buts it's similar, it's not Patrick Fitzgerald either who may or may not still have a Safety Pin Stuck in His Heart For You, for you, but it's similar

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by wilsontown » Fri Oct 08, 2021 12:06 pm

Halifax explosion of 2017, anyone?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halifax_Explosion
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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by IvanV » Fri Oct 08, 2021 12:47 pm

wilsontown wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 12:06 pm
Halifax explosion of 201917, anyone?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halifax_Explosion
ftfy.

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by wilsontown » Fri Oct 08, 2021 1:22 pm

Er yes, thanks for that. Not sure how I got that wrong. Should be 1917 as you say...
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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Oct 08, 2021 1:29 pm

There I was, wondering if I'd missed some story where that Harold chap got radicalised...
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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by plodder » Fri Oct 08, 2021 1:48 pm

A things that might go boom thread would be fun. Perhaps we need to change the thread title.

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by noggins » Fri Oct 08, 2021 3:16 pm

Martin_B wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 9:00 am

Stealthily avoid the mines, board the vessel, disconnect the pipeline from shore, fix and fire up the boilers, clear the mines, and sail the very large and only vaguely seaworthy VLCC past the rest of the Yemeni coast into the open sea and to a port where you can unload the oil, or;

Stop the Yemen War (possibly a ceasefire would do) and get a major repair team onto the vessel where they can arrange enough repairs to unload the oil and then scrap the empty hull.
Option one means towing a 45 year old VLCC that hasn't moved in 30 . Not going to happen.

Option two - the ships cargo equipment is almost certainly beyond repair.

so its Option three - Salvage team unload the cargo. Then remove as much enviromentally unpleasant material as possible.
Then scuttle it there or tow it away with the understanding its very likely to sink under tow.

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by noggins » Fri Oct 08, 2021 3:16 pm

.

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by plodder » Fri Oct 08, 2021 3:22 pm

noggins wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 3:16 pm


so its Option three - Salvage team unload the cargo. Then remove as much enviromentally unpleasant material as possible.
Then scuttle it there or tow it away with the understanding its very likely to sink under tow.
without making any sparks.

They can't tow it, that's not a plan. I once worked with someone who built a dry dock out of a mountain they blew up in order to de-water the location round a sunk nuclear submarine. All a bit much, innit.

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by Sciolus » Fri Oct 08, 2021 7:07 pm

The only option is to get the Houthis to agree to it being defused. They have clearly watched Dr Strangelove and understood that there's no point having a doomsday device to obliterate the whole world if no-one knows about it. Unfortunately they don't seem to have noticed that it's likely to go off even without anyone pressing the button. (Or more likely, those in charge think that they personally will benefit from the resulting destruction.)

Still, BAE have made a pile of money out of contributing to the disaster, so that's the main thing.

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Oct 08, 2021 7:25 pm

Why did the Saudis even need to buy all those weapons from us if this thing was just sitting there?

Their failure at this simple bit of closed-loop economic recycling really makes me wonder about their green credentials more broadly.
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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by Boustrophedon » Fri Oct 08, 2021 8:05 pm

tenchboy wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 11:54 am
Hmmm, maybe just to make a change from the annual Dead Pool we could do a Bomb Ship Kaboom Pool.
This one versus the Edmund Fitzgerald* in the Medway/Thames Estuary and or indeed any others; there must be others

* Yeah I know it's not that, The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald is a folk song covered by Gordon Giltrap, buts it's similar, it's not Patrick Fitzgerald either who may or may not still have a Safety Pin Stuck in His Heart For You, for you, but it's similar
I'd pay to hear Gordon Giltrap singing the Wreck of the Richard Montgomery.

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by tenchboy » Fri Oct 08, 2021 8:47 pm

Boustrophedon wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 8:05 pm
tenchboy wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 11:54 am
Hmmm, maybe just to make a change from the annual Dead Pool we could do a Bomb Ship Kaboom Pool.
This one versus the Edmund Fitzgerald* in the Medway/Thames Estuary and or indeed any others; there must be others

* Yeah I know it's not that, The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald is a folk song covered by Gordon Giltrap, buts it's similar, it's not Patrick Fitzgerald either who may or may not still have a Safety Pin Stuck in His Heart For You, for you, but it's similar
I'd pay to hear Gordon Giltrap singing the Wreck of the Richard Montgomery.

Tom Scott explains here.
Yes! Richard Montgomontry! That 's the one! I looked it up m'self afterwards.
Even Gordon Giltrap was wrong t'were Gordon Lightfoot what done it all down the gitchy goolie I'm not having a good one today.

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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by Martin_B » Fri Oct 08, 2021 11:35 pm

plodder wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 10:41 am
f.cking hell, "gently warm the tanker to simmering point" hadn't occurred to me as a sensible safety measure
In a more controlled environment this process is referred to as 'stabilising' the oil. The more controlled environment being one in which the container isn't a leaky wreck guarded by men with guns and mines. *
Fishnut wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 11:11 am
I can't imagine what it must be like to live on that ship, knowing that any minute it could explode.
And probably not being paid, either. Does anyone remember this story of the lone guy living on a tanker off the Egyptian coast?
noggins wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 3:16 pm
Martin_B wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 9:00 am

Stealthily avoid the mines, board the vessel, disconnect the pipeline from shore, fix and fire up the boilers, clear the mines, and sail the very large and only vaguely seaworthy VLCC** past the rest of the Yemeni coast into the open sea and to a port where you can unload the oil, or;

Stop the Yemen War (possibly a ceasefire would do) and get a major repair team onto the vessel where they can arrange enough repairs to unload the oil and then scrap the empty hull.
Option one means towing a 45 year old VLCC that hasn't moved in 30 . Not going to happen.

Option two - the ships cargo equipment is almost certainly beyond repair.

so its Option three - Salvage team unload the cargo. Then remove as much environmentally unpleasant material as possible.
Then scuttle it there or tow it away with the understanding its very likely to sink under tow.
This is true. My responses to plodder were a bit tongue in cheek, and option 1 was definitely a disaster waiting to happen. With option 2 a major repair crew might be able to get the boilers working and the offloading equipment back into service. Option 3 would be messy, as unloading the cargo via vacuum pumps has it's own issues, and would definitely require the cessation of the Yemen War (or at least the cooperation of the Houthis) as it's not something which can be done either quickly or stealthily.

And yes, towing an unseaworthy vessel is likely to "not end well".

* I did say that I work with this kind of sh.t every day, on a smaller scale!
** Just read that the Safer isn't a VLCC, it's a ULCC. VLCCs are up to 320,000 DWT, the Safer is a 406,000 DWT!
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Re: huge bomb ship in the Yemen

Post by plodder » Fri Oct 08, 2021 11:54 pm


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