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Well now here we are at the last day of January and already the first month of 2012 is gone.  In Florida today it is the Republican Party Primary voting day.  Under the Voting Rules in our State the independent voters, or "No Party Affiliation" as our Florida voting cards show, have no say.  The Republican Campaign has been full of bombastic bluster (Saint versus sinner?) and very little of substance, particularly the last two debates (and one uses that word reservedly) which of course plays right into the hands of the current Administration - not good.

That reminds me we have heard nothing from the SSCS seagoing Cult for weeks and of course the ICR makes no reports so one surmises the Southern Ocean whaling is in full swing as the Sea Shepherd vessels are apparently are quite unable to stop it or even slow it down.  The "Operation Divine Wind" is a complete failure and the only thing accomplished so far is yet the loss of another Darth Vader craft.

According to the definition given in Websters the word "bluster" means "to make a noise like a blast of wind; to bully or swagger; bullying or boastful language".  Wow! that sounds just like the SSCS seagoing Cult's Chief Windbag "Wats-his-name" so things must be really bad for him when he cannot come up with any such noise in these last weeks.  Can it be that he has finally lost his ability to lead, even as he defines leadership, and is bereft of ideas.   After all he has used the same tired old tactics over and over again each season so that the Japanese have been trained to deal with them by default.

One suspects that the last encounter with the whalers may have caused a backlash amongst his personnel including the TV photographers on board the SSCS Cult vessels.  No camera-person wants to have an eye poked out by an irate Japanese with a bamboo pole which would very possibly be a career ending injury. It may be that they are refusing to follow  SSCS Cult tactics which could get them injured, while "Wats-his-name" sits on board writing poetry - since he is not currently blustering to the Media.  The great losers in all this are the whales which are being freely slaughtered by the Japanese Whaling Fleet.

Good Watch.

The other losers due to the cowardly behaviour of the International Community are the 300 or so of our fellow seafarers held hostage by pirates off the coast of Puntland, Somalia. It would be nice to think that there might be plans for their rescue but sadly it does not seem likely.  As readers can see below NAUTICAL LOG wrote a COMPLAINT to the International Court and we also e-mailed them.  At least they are now aware of the situation and cannot say they were not contacted by a professional seafarer.  NAUTICAL LOG shall keep trying even though we get absolutely no support whatsoever.


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Several times during the year NAUTICAL LOG has had visitors searching for lifejacket instructions. With two just over Christmas we decided to publish something for everybody to see and read.
Choose a Coast Guard approved life-jacket and make sure it is undamaged. Make sure life-jackets are readily accessible, never locked away. Check the fit, there are adult, child and infant sizes, the correct one MUST be used. Choose bright colour life-jackets so as to be seen easily by Search and Rescue (SAR).Put your life-jacket ON BEFORE you leave the berth. Make sure you have a light and whistle attached AND they BOTH WORK.
Good Watch


This month saw the commissioning into the Irish Naval Service of a new Class of Irish Naval vessel more of the Frigate size than the previously Corvette size.  However they are all classed as Patrol vessels, the new vessel is LÉ Samuel Beckett P61.NAUTICAL LOG wishes her well and a successful service.

The older vessels saw unbelievable service and value for money the first being commissioned in 1979 and continued through the '80's and 90's into the 21st. Century.  During those years in addition to patrolling the stormy seas around the rugged Irish coast they made passages across the Western Ocean to the United States and Canada, south to South America as far as Argentina, and east to Asia as far as Korea.  Such passages are really remarkable for such small vessels and show the competence of Irish seafarers who as Naval Officers and Merchant Marine Officers train together.

Good Watch.


Ships now operate under the International Management Code for Safe Operation of Ships and for Pollution Prevention (ISM Code).  Since this is a Post on Auditing NAUTICAL LOG, who is a Trained Auditor, will not go through the requirements as these can be found on the Internet and in your local nautical bookshop - you do have a bookshop hopefully as they are a dying breed.  There are two types of Audit an External Audit and an Internal Audit.

The External Audit consists of the Flag State or an outside Auditing Firm coming into the Company and going through all the Protocols, Procedures and associated Manuals.  They may also hold a drill simulating a situation in one of the Company's vessels and observe the results of the Shore Staff dealing with it.  NAUTICAL LOG has been through this experience with two very different Companies and believe me it is a long, difficult, trying day not made any easier by the subsequent debrief.  The External Auditor then prepares a Report which causes a…