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Safety Drill


dag144
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I was recently on the Koningsdam.  The safety drill was conducted in multiple venues in the ship rather than on the promenade deck.  The drill was much easier on old geezers like me and it was much faster and smoother than the outside drills.  Hope this is a fleet-wide change.  Does anyone know?

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2 minutes ago, dag144 said:

I was recently on the Koningsdam.  The safety drill was conducted in multiple venues in the ship rather than on the promenade deck.  The drill was much easier on old geezers like me and it was much faster and smoother than the outside drills.  Hope this is a fleet-wide change.  Does anyone know?

 

No, it’s not fleetwide.

 

It’s on the Pinnacle Class ships (Koningsdam & N Statendam) because of the # of passengers and the more narrow Promenade deck.

 

The muster/safety/lifeboat drill has been that way on the Pinnacle Class ships since they began sailing.

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1 hour ago, wyobean said:

The safety drill on all the ships could be a breeze if people would follow the directions.

Totally agree.  We've been on dam ships where the drill was over in 15 minutes and others where the drill dragged on for 30 minutes while we waited for stragglers.  The stragglers generally talked through the instructions, making it difficult for those in the back, who were on time, to hear.

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4 hours ago, dag144 said:

I was recently on the Koningsdam.  The safety drill was conducted in multiple venues in the ship rather than on the promenade deck.  The drill was much easier on old geezers like me and it was much faster and smoother than the outside drills.  Hope this is a fleet-wide change.  Does anyone know?

When the kaka hits the fan and the captain issues the "abandon ship" order for real, there will be mass panic with people running over each other trying to get to their lifeboat boarding station.   When that happens, I wouldn't want to be sitting in a comfy lounge somewhere, waiting for my group to be led to the lifeboat station.   I want the drills to be right at the boat boarding station, so everyone knows where it's at and how to get there.   I'm 72, so I qualify as an "old geezer"  and it is painful for me standing for 30 minutes waiting for the fashionably late crowd to show up holding that last drink they needed to muddle through this "silly drill".

And others are right about the Promenade deck space on Pinnacle class ships.  On the smaller ships,  the full lifeboat load of passengers gets very tight, even on those wide Promenade decks.   With a much narrower deck, plus an extra thousand passengers, there's no way a full boat load could fit on those narrow decks.  So, your muster station is in some lounge somewhere, with no clue where your actual assigned lifeboat is located.  But heaven forbid that HAL would have to design smaller deck 3 shops on those ships to allow for all that wasted space on a wider promenade deck.  After all, it's only a couple of crazy joggers who actually use it !!! 

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32 minutes ago, TAD2005 said:

When the kaka hits the fan and the captain issues the "abandon ship" order for real, there will be mass panic with people running over each other trying to get to their lifeboat boarding station.   When that happens, I wouldn't want to be sitting in a comfy lounge somewhere, waiting for my group to be led to the lifeboat station.   I want the drills to be right at the boat boarding station, so everyone knows where it's at and how to get there.   I'm 72, so I qualify as an "old geezer"  and it is painful for me standing for 30 minutes waiting for the fashionably late crowd to show up holding that last drink they needed to muddle through this "silly drill".

 

We just did two muster drills on the NS. Quite a difference between the stern on deck five where there is a secret back stairs and the stern of deck eight where you politely wait for the "old geezers" , over weight and disabled to politely dare the steps. (for 6 decks) When the kaka hits the fan , all civility will disappear.

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Several of you posters should lighten up.  I agree that most people turn off when the drill takes place.  Part of the cause of this turnoff is the length and long wait before anyone begins the drill.

 

On the Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Princess and Windstar cruises that have sailed, the drills were done in inside venues.  Most started on time. While the attention of the audiences was not the best, at least the guests were not preoccupied with the heat or the cold.  Perhaps there is no good way to perform this drill in today's huge ships.  Heaven help us if we are ever called to go to muster stations for real.

 

For those angry souls like TAD2005 take some hostility out on the food!

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7 minutes ago, dag144 said:

Several of you posters should lighten up.  I agree that most people turn off when the drill takes place.  Part of the cause of this turnoff is the length and long wait before anyone begins the drill.

 

On the Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Princess and Windstar cruises that have sailed, the drills were done in inside venues.  Most started on time. While the attention of the audiences was not the best, at least the guests were not preoccupied with the heat or the cold.  Perhaps there is no good way to perform this drill in today's huge ships.  Heaven help us if we are ever called to go to muster stations for real.

 

For those angry souls like TAD2005 take some hostility out on the food!

Thanks for the personal slam DAG144.   I am hardly an "angry soul", I just want to know where my lifeboat boarding station is, how to get there quickly, and once I'm there for the muster drill, I don't want to have to stand there waiting for the stragglers who show up 30 minutes late, and laugh off the fact that they caused everyone to waste precious time.   Please use some common courtesy on this board and not personally ridicule other CC members because their personal opinions don't agree with your way if thinking..   

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I like the indoor muster. You know where you're supposed to go to wait to be taken to your boat. In an emergency, when civility disappears, people may rush to get to the muster stations, but at least they won't be rushing onto the deck and trampling people as they race to their boats. 

 

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I

8 minutes ago, 3rdGenCunarder said:

I like the indoor muster. You know where you're supposed to go to wait to be taken to your boat. In an emergency, when civility disappears, people may rush to get to the muster stations, but at least they won't be rushing onto the deck and trampling people as they race to their boats. 

 

I wonder if it will still be "Women and children first"

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I compare the indoor muster drills to the old days in grade school (1950's) when we were told to get under our desks and "duck and cover" as a protection from a nuclear blast.   As we quickly learned, that 'duck & cover" farce was just to placate people and allow them to feel safe and protected.   In an actual nuclear blast, you and the desk you are under would be toast.  The indoor muster drills fulfill the USCG requirements, but tells you nothing about the location or route of where your lifeboat boarding station is.   In a real emergency, all civility and order will be quickly abandoned.  When that happens, it sure would be nice to know which lifeboat I am assigned to, where it is located, and the fastest way to get there.

Edited by TAD2005
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On 11/30/2019 at 11:03 PM, TAD2005 said:

When the kaka hits the fan and the captain issues the "abandon ship" order for real, there will be mass panic with people running over each other trying to get to their lifeboat boarding station.   When that happens, I wouldn't want to be sitting in a comfy lounge somewhere, waiting for my group to be led to the lifeboat station.   I want the drills to be right at the boat boarding station, so everyone knows where it's at and how to get there.   I'm 72, so I qualify as an "old geezer"  and it is painful for me standing for 30 minutes waiting for the fashionably late crowd to show up holding that last drink they needed to muddle through this "silly drill".

And others are right about the Promenade deck space on Pinnacle class ships.  On the smaller ships,  the full lifeboat load of passengers gets very tight, even on those wide Promenade decks.   With a much narrower deck, plus an extra thousand passengers, there's no way a full boat load could fit on those narrow decks.  So, your muster station is in some lounge somewhere, with no clue where your actual assigned lifeboat is located.  But heaven forbid that HAL would have to design smaller deck 3 shops on those ships to allow for all that wasted space on a wider promenade deck.  After all, it's only a couple of crazy joggers who actually use it !!! 

Well, as I've stated repeatedly over the years, the purpose of the passenger muster is not to get you to the boats.  Passenger muster is done in any emergency that requires accountability of the passengers, whether there is any danger of evacuating the ship or not.  The signal is not to "abandon ship", it is to proceed to your muster station.  It may be hours between the sounding of the alarm and the Captain's decision to abandon the ship, or never.  The main focus of the passenger muster is to have the passengers in known, controlled, limited locations so that accountability can be made.  This is why you need to forget about the lifeboat, with regards to the muster, and deal with going to your muster station.  If, in the rare event that you then had to go from the muster location to the boats, the crew would direct you in a safe, orderly fashion, so that the boats can be loaded and lowered as quickly and efficiently as possible.

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While you are on the topic, perhaps some of you well seasoned cruisers could answer my question. We will be boarding the Maasdam in Papeete, French Polynesia on March 15th, 2020 cruising to San Diego. As HAL often does, this will be one segment of multiple cruises. The ship docks in Papeete on the 14th and then overnights with some passengers leaving on the 15th and some beginning their cruise. My understanding is that we cannot board until 1 pm (although we have to leave our hotel room at 11 am) and the the ship leaves the dock at 11 pm. Does anybody know when they would do the muster drill? Do the passengers who are continuing their cruise have to attend? Since we will be docked, can we leave the ship prior to the muster drill and return for the drill? Can we leave the ship after the muster drill? What about the "crazy" passengers that are flying in the same day and don't get there until 7:30 pm? Thank you in advance for your answers.

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On 11/30/2019 at 5:03 PM, TAD2005 said:

When the kaka hits the fan and the captain issues the "abandon ship" order for real, there will be mass panic with people running over each other trying to get to their lifeboat boarding station.   When that happens, I wouldn't want to be sitting in a comfy lounge somewhere, waiting for my group to be led to the lifeboat station.   I want the drills to be right at the boat boarding station, so everyone knows where it's at and how to get there.  

 

99% of emergencies that require a muster do not result in a need to board the lifeboats and leave the ship.

 

And many of the emergencies can last for hours. I would rather spend those hours in a comfy lounge somewhere than outside in cold and rain and nowhere to sit.

 

Also, in a real emergency access to some lifeboats may be blocked. If in a comfy lounge and it is necessary to board a lifeboat, crew will lead you to an accessible, working lifeboat.

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3 hours ago, jakers said:

While you are on the topic, perhaps some of you well seasoned cruisers could answer my question. We will be boarding the Maasdam in Papeete, French Polynesia on March 15th, 2020 cruising to San Diego. As HAL often does, this will be one segment of multiple cruises. The ship docks in Papeete on the 14th and then overnights with some passengers leaving on the 15th and some beginning their cruise. My understanding is that we cannot board until 1 pm (although we have to leave our hotel room at 11 am) and the the ship leaves the dock at 11 pm. Does anybody know when they would do the muster drill? Do the passengers who are continuing their cruise have to attend? Since we will be docked, can we leave the ship prior to the muster drill and return for the drill? Can we leave the ship after the muster drill? What about the "crazy" passengers that are flying in the same day and don't get there until 7:30 pm? Thank you in advance for your answers.

 

I can't tell you when the muster drill would be, but:

a) Chances are you can board the ship between 11 am and Noon as that is when boarding starts in other ports.

b) Yes, you can board the ship and leave it as you wish.

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11 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

The signal is not to "abandon ship", it is to proceed to your muster station.  It may be hours between the sounding of the alarm and the Captain's decision to abandon the ship, or never. 

That is, or at least until recently has been, part of the Captain's speech on all muster drills.   I wish other cruise lines would follow that lead.

 

Roy

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On 11/30/2019 at 3:22 PM, wyobean said:

The safety drill on all the ships could be a breeze if people would follow the directions.

 

 

 

Amen!   A few years ago I was on the Nieuw Amsterdam right after the incident on Costa and people were quiet and listened.

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20 hours ago, TAD2005 said:

I compare the indoor muster drills to the old days in grade school (1950's) when we were told to get under our desks and "duck and cover" as a protection from a nuclear blast.   As we quickly learned, that 'duck & cover" farce was just to placate people and allow them to feel safe and protected.   In an actual nuclear blast, you and the desk you are under would be toast.  The indoor muster drills fulfill the USCG requirements, but tells you nothing about the location or route of where your lifeboat boarding station is.   In a real emergency, all civility and order will be quickly abandoned.  When that happens, it sure would be nice to know which lifeboat I am assigned to, where it is located, and the fastest way to get there.

And as I said in my earlier post (didn't see this one at that time), 90% of the time that passengers are even called to muster (and that's pretty rare), they won't even be considered to need to board the boats.  Your job as a passenger is to learn how to find your muster station, and get there as timely as possible, so that crew resources are not wasted on looking for passengers who decide that getting to the boats is their first priority.  And, as noted by another poster, how does knowing what your boat number is, and where it is, help you if there is a fire directly above that boat?  Just study the Star Princess fire.  As for knowing how to get somewhere, that is up to you, and your biggest contribution to your own safety is to run what I call "mental evacuations", where you imagine a fire somewhere on the ship.  Then as you sit in a lounge with a drink, think of how you get from where you are, to your muster stationwithout going through or above the fire.  Because, as I said, your job is to "show up, sit down, and shut up".

 

And, as for "wasting time" waiting for the stragglers at drill, why not actually do something affirmative for your safety and spend that time running the mental evacuation scenarios.  That way you might actually spend 30 minutes of the entire cruise actually thinking of your own safety.

Edited by chengkp75
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As is totally obvious by my other posts on this topic, I DO think about my own safety and my DW's.  Because of the muster drill, I know exactly how to get there, and in most cases, it is to the actual boat boarding station.  I also am aware of different routes to that station because I walk the promenade deck regularly.   In all of my many year history with HAL, I have never sailed on the 2 newest, larger ships that have muster stations in lounges.   So, if there's any doubt, I am in favor of the muster drills held on the promenade deck next to the boat boarding station.   

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