Professional Mariner - December 2013/January 2014

Swinging a compass

“It is the ever-present fallibility of electronics that keeps the compass adjuster in business,” Capt. George Barber said when asked to explain the science and art of swinging a compass.

Ferry captain loses job after departing dock while cars still loading

At 1956 on Aug. 7, dispatchers in Jamestown, Va., received a series of 911 emergency calls from the local wharf, where car ferry Surry was in the midst of its last departure for the night. Stunned witnesses reported that a car had fallen off the boat’s ramp, and a 19-year-old woman was trapped inside.