Cadet Blog: 3/C Jay Desautels (MTRA - Rutland, MA) 1-3-23


I had a very long and busy day two today! I started out with an early 0600 wake-up and breakfast by 0630. At 0700 my division, (D2) mustered on the pier. 

We began delegating and being placed in different operations around the ship and pier for the process of onloading the ship. I was chosen to climb back onto the ship and aft above the Mess Deck to aid in the running of the crane. My job was to signal and command the crane through signaling and assist the safe and efficient maneuvering of the loads coming onto the ship. The pallets would come off the semi-trucks, then onto the pier. 

pallets on the pier
pallet lifted by crane
crane lifting pallets to ship

Next, cadets and mates would strap up the pallets and prepare them for the crane. Once the straps were ready, the hook was lowered.  Then the load was hoisted all the way up to the Boat Deck where it was lowered down a tight shaft.

pallet lower down shaft

It took many hands and eyes on the load during the windy and rainy conditions to get the loads down safely and efficiently and into the ship where they could be stored. I oversaw the commanding and signaling so that the loads were lowered and hoisted into the right areas and spaces. I have attached some photos for reference.

With a few breaks for lunch and coffee we worked from 0700 to 1600. When all the pallets were loaded for the day, I had a hold captain meeting at 1700.  Then ate dinner and went to the gym and worked out.

I have now showered, cleaned the hold a little and I am getting ready to go to bed. and do it again tomorrow. Have a good night, everyone!

What a busy day you had, Jay!  We are so lucky that you still had enough energy left to send along a blog and these outstanding photos.

Thanks for sharing the onload process from a different point of view.  Although the Follow The Voyage-Share The Experience Program has always provided photos from the dock, it has never been able to offer photos from the Helo Deck.  I know that everyone will love the photo of the pallet being lowered down the shaft.

Our student followers will be inspired by your enthusiasm.  

We look forward to your next blog.