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3rdGenCunarder

Dry dock question

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Since we have some people with inside info, I want to ask what do crew do during a dry dock? I suppose cabin stewards can do extra cleaning, maintenance and deck hands can work on whatever is being done. But what about passenger service people like MDR cooks and waiters, bartenders, shop assistants, casino staff? 

 

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Many of them stay on board supporting the dry dock by cleaning, cooking/feeding, manual labor, etc.

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Some staff will get the extended time off. Others will do cleaning, or be the "crew" for the staff working the drydock. I assume though that they do get some time off.

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1 hour ago, 3rdGenCunarder said:

Since we have some people with inside info, I want to ask what do crew do during a dry dock? I suppose cabin stewards can do extra cleaning, maintenance and deck hands can work on whatever is being done. But what about passenger service people like MDR cooks and waiters, bartenders, shop assistants, casino staff? 

 

 

With the exception of the entertainers/cast members and folks like the future cruise consultant, who will be off the ship, the crew is kept very busy during dry-dock with various projects. There will be a bunch of moving, eventually putting back, and cleaning involved by members of the Housekeeping staff. Although Beverage will not be serving during a dry-dock, they also will be kept busy assisting other crew, as will the food service guys and girls. There will be 500-600 contractors on board so the galley staff will continue to prepare food several times a day however, there will be no table service as there is with pax on board (yes, on the cleanup and dish washing after meal service). It will become a buffet-style service inside the main galley with crew (officer and petty officer status) and contractors consuming their meals in a plastic covered (tables/chairs and carpet) main dining room. The crew galley will remain open downstairs.

 

Guest Services will remain open (for the contractors) 24 hrs a day. The shoppies as well as the Steiners will be busy with their own projects. Regular watches (shifts) will be run by Deck and Engineering, as will be by security with manning the crew/contractor/yard worker gangway. Fire is one of the biggest dangers during a dry-dock so both security and the fire safety attendants (both belonging to Deck) will be making 24 hrs safety rounds throughout the ship. It's a busy time with periods without a/c and hot water. 

 

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Edited by Copper10-8

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Forgot to add; there will be time-off for crew during the evening and night. In a place like Freeport, the Bahamas, there is just about nada to do in and around the yard itself, so there is transportation to town and the restaurants, one of which (Pier One) "feeds sharks" at the ring of a bell. Freeport dry-docks do not rank high at the top of the "dry-dock list". Places like Hamburg, Singapore, Sydney and Palermo rate way higher

 

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Technical Dept. crew member inside the fwd bow thruster, something you don't see everyday 

 

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We talked with a couple of crew members we knew.  The majority of the crew said they were exhausted after the dry dock and really needed a vacation.

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6 minutes ago, boards said:

When was the Noordam in dry dock?

 

Those pics were taken in Apr 2015

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Thanks.  I wondered because we are booked on the first cruise after the dry docking of the Noordam this October.   Looking forward to the changes it will experience.

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Thanks, Copper, for your post and pictures.  As usual, you provide fantastic information for those of us who may not know the behind-the-scenes action on various aspects of the dam ships we love so much.

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2 hours ago, boards said:

Thanks.  I wondered because we are booked on the first cruise after the dry docking of the Noordam this October.   Looking forward to the changes it will experience.

 

She's supposed to get Shorex/‘Journey’s ashore’/EXC guides moved from Deck 1 to the starboard side of the Crow’s Nest in addition to “Explorations Central” with ‘the Hub’, ‘Destinations Display’, ‘Virtual Bridge’, ‘Theater EXC’ and ‘the Library’ in the Crow’s Nest. What will be interesting to see, and you'll be in a great position to report on it, is if they'll leave her current Explorations Cafe and Library alone

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In addition to the list of things crew does that John provided, in my experience one of the largest tasks assigned to crew that isn't their normal duties is cleaning up after the contractors.  The sub-contractors are on too tight a time line, so the crew are assigned to remove all demo material from the jobsite, and to clean the jobsites up every night so the contractors have a clear workspace every morning.  Also, wherever cutting and welding is done, there must be a "fire watch" (person stationed with a fire extinguisher who's only job is to look for incipient fires from sparks) not only in the space where the cutting/welding is being performed, but also on the other side of the bulkhead or deck, as the heat from welding can burn the paint on the other side of the steel.  The first couple of days of drydock the engine staff spend a lot of time escorting waiters, bar staff, and cabin stewards around the engine room to get them to their assigned duties, since for 98% of the time, the engineering spaces are off-limits to all crew other than engineering.

 

What lots of folks don't understand about a cruise ship drydocking is that virtually everything that is done to areas that passengers see (new venues, repairs/refurbishment to worn items) is not done by the shipyard or its personnel.  The shipyard's expertise is with marine systems, so they do the technical maintenance, and hull painting.  Everything else; upholstery, carpeting, renewing walls and ceilings in new/renovated venues in guest areas, teak deck repairs, virtually everything in John's photos other than those down in the drydock, is done by sub-contractors brought in for the job.  Since these workers are not local, they need to be fed and housed, and it is cheaper and more efficient to house them on the ship.  So, they get guest cabins and eat in the MDR as John says, and therefore the galley needs to prepare meals for them, and cabin stewards need to change the linen once a week, and laundry needs to clean this linen, and so forth, so for a lot of crew it is almost like a normal week onboard, except that there will be paper or fiberboard over the carpets (which gets torn up and has to be replaced several times during the docking).  I've seen upwards of a thousand sub-contractors on a 2400 pax ship during a drydocking, depending on how much work is planned.

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