Have you ever hit a shipping container? - Page 13 - SailNet Community
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post #121 of Old 10-01-2014
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Re: Have you ever hit a shipping container?

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Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
Another lose for the Pacific Gyre.

Theres been a steady stream of junk from F to BC, hasnt there? Surprised its still happening.
Speaking of which...

This is a strange one. First time I've ever heard of hitting floating debris that subsequently became AIRBORNE, and took out a radar unit... That's a tough one to picture, seems it would have been more likely to have been something that had some structure or projection floating well above the water to begin with...

Sure, someone was on watch at the time... the question might be, was he AWAKE ?

:-))

Yet another reminder, you don't ever want to have to make that transfer from a small yacht being abandoned at sea, to the deck of a container ship...

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"Whatever we hit had destroyed the front of our starboard ama. The unknown object then apparently became airborne and slammed into the starboard side of the main cabin with sufficient force to detach two cabin lights and knock much of the lining off the inside of the hull. We also noticed a 3-foot hairline crack that was dripping water by the V-berth. Two of the starboard windows were damaged, presumably from the flexing of the hull. The forward starboard tramp and forward starboard rigging were dragging in the water. The force of the impact even managed to dislodge the radar unit mounted several feet above the waterline aft of everything. Whatever we hit must have gotten at least 10 feet in the air and flown 20 feet back.

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post #122 of Old 10-01-2014
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Re: Have you ever hit a shipping container?

Coming from the land of driftwood I could imagine a situation where you hit a small tree lying semi submerged. Stump end does the hull damage and top swings up and over to wipe out the radar.
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post #123 of Old 10-01-2014
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Re: Have you ever hit a shipping container?

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Originally Posted by johngeo View Post
Have you ever hit a shipping container?
I have not. My buddy Robert Redford did in his movie.

Good luck on your report. Hope it is informative and unbiased.


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I am old school. Integrity is to do the right thing even when no one is watching.
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post #124 of Old 10-01-2014
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Re: Have you ever hit a shipping container?

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Good luck on your report. Hope it is informative and unbiased.
See:
Need to post this on the 'Ocean Navigator' subforum if possible

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post #125 of Old 10-01-2014
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Re: Have you ever hit a shipping container?

Zombie thread from 2012 springs to life...

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post #126 of Old 10-01-2014
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Re: Have you ever hit a shipping container?

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Originally Posted by johnnyquest37 View Post
Hellosailor posits that 10,000 shipping containers go over the side each year. It appears that these containers eventually sink or wash ashore. Let's just say they stay afloat for an average of six months. This means we've got about 5,000 containers floating out there at any given time. A standard shipping container is aprx. 40' x 8' resulting in a maximum surfaced area of 320 square feet. Five thousand of these results in 1.6 million square feet of hazard. Total surface area of the world's oceans are 3.6x10 the 15th power square feet. Dividing container sf by ocean sf ocean sf results in 4.4x10 to the negative 8th power or 0.00000000044 percent chance of encoutering a container at any given time.

This is very generalized, of course. Containers are certainly more concentrated near the shipping lanes and ocean currents may tend to concentrate them even further.

Not trying to pooh-pooh the concern of hitting one, but given the odds, it does not surprise me that we don't hear many stories of folks running into shipping containers.
Great intent on this, but it's not a surface area issue. Surface area would apply to the odds of a single, ocean-striking meteor hitting a boat, since the meteor slices through the "plain" of the ocean.

You boat is going to "slice through" the surface of the ocean/bay from one side to the other.

So, just rattling this off without too much thought in it... the odds of hitting a container is proportional to the length of your voyage, the number of containers afloat in the waters that you travel, the beam our your boat (kind of), and the beam of a shipping container (kind of). (Since shipping containers could be broadside to your path or not, use the average of the lenght and width of a shipping container. I'm ignoring height for this, although a container could be tilted, etc.) The odds are inversely proportional to the area of the waters you travel. (This along with the number of containers actually gives us the container-density).

Actually, the odds aren't exactly proportional to the beam of the boat and the beam of container. That would be true for one if the other had minicule width like a floating lobster pot buoy. Noodling it a bit, it's more proportional to the two beams added together.


So if I may do this with estimates and in the metric system to make the math easy...

. . . . . . . . . . TripLength * NumbConts * (BoatWidth + ContWidth)
. . . . .odds = ----------------------------------------------------------------
. . . . . . . . . . AreaOfWaters

Trip = 1,000km
Number of Containers currently floating in your ocean = 1,000
Boat width = 2 meters
Shipping container width = (13m + 3m)/2 = 8 m
Breath of ocean = 1,000km
Area of Ocean that containers are distributed across = 1,000km * 1,000km


. . . . odds = (1,000km * 1,000 * 10m) / (1,000km * 1,000km)

canceling out one set of "1,000km":

. . . . odds = (1,000 * 10m) / 1,000km

. . . . odds = 10km / 1,000km

canceling the "meters" from both side and dividing by 10

. . . . odds = 1 / 100

So if there were 1,000 containers floating in an smallish ocean, and you were to sail across that ocean, the change of hitting one is 1 in 100! (Even 100 containers floating in your small ocean would mean a 1 in 1000 chance of hitting one!)


Obviously there aren't that many containers still floating or there are fewer sailboats making such long trips. Either that or we just explained some of the sudden disappearances of sailboats.

(And yes, we could use the boat's smaller beam at the waterline instead. Like I said, this is quick noodling.)

----

Another way to picture this is to look at the area of your path, much like the area cleaned by a single push of a vacuum cleaner. And then compare that with the area of the ocean. If you path is longer, you have a greater chance of hitting something.

Hope this helps with a better approximation of the math. Not sure it's complete yet, but it's a bit better, and a bit scary.

Regards,
Brad
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Last edited by Bene505; 10-01-2014 at 08:14 PM.
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post #127 of Old 10-01-2014
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Re: Have you ever hit a shipping container?

So, the next question is has anyone found any cool stuff in a lost container? Or survived the inspection of one.
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post #128 of Old 10-01-2014
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Re: Have you ever hit a shipping container?

What are the odds of someone going totally off-topic in a response to a thread that died nearly two years before they came across it? Higher or lower than the odds of someone sailing with an improper watch and hitting flotsam of any kind?

I'm so confused, ever since Jimmy the Greek died, I haven't been able to get firm odds on anything, and these days, Jimmy won't even give odds through Harry Houdini's ghost!

"Die, Vampire, Die!"
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post #129 of Old 10-03-2014
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Re: Have you ever hit a shipping container?

More than 50 years plying the Atlantic and never saw a single one.

Gary
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post #130 of Old 10-03-2014
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Re: Have you ever hit a shipping container?

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Originally Posted by Krisan View Post
Or survived the inspection of one.
Yes...

http://www.oceannavigator.com/March-...fshore-danger/

I've had my photos published in several mags...

Last edited by aa3jy; 10-03-2014 at 11:55 AM.
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