>SYC Heads Home!

>After a brief stop in Adak, SYCAMORE is underway again. This time around, we are doing our primary mission of servicing ATON.

We started the last leg of this deployment on Monday by tending the Finger Shoal buoy right outside of Adak’s harbor. SYC used this opportunity to do plenty of training with all of the new members onboard, especially those who had never worked a buoy.
Bringing the buoy across the deck

SN Burnet and SN Danielson during the heat and beat, finishing up the work on the buoy.

The next day, SYC worked one of the Kuluk Shoal buoys, again, focusing on training and reinforcing the principles of buoy tending. Working the aid also provided the newest members of the crew an opportunity to participate in two heat and beats.

Just after retrieving the buoy.

Bringing the Kuluk Shoal aid aboard.

For those unfamiliar with buoy deck evolutions, each color hardhat indicates a different role on deck. In the picture above there are six different colored hard hats. The unqualified people on deck wear green hardhats. The first qualification on the buoy deck is Rigger. Riggers wear blue hardhats and are qualified in executing orders from the Buoy Deck Supervisor (BDS) without direct supervision. The Rigger has the responsibly of directing and supervising the green hats. Red hardhats are worn by engineers, particularly those qualified as Oxygen Acetylene operators. In the picture above, this means that DC3 Diou can operate the torch used to heat up a chain or shackle to either cut through it, or to link it together during a heat and beat. The most qualified person on deck wears a yellow hardhat, and is the BDS. They are responsible for all of the commands given on deck, and supervising the entire evolution. In the picture above, you will notice that BM1 Hutchin is wearing a blue hardhat with yellow stripes, this means he is rigger qualified, but is breaking in as a BDS under BM2 Shapleigh, who is the qualified BDS. White hardhats are typically worn by Chiefs and Officers, who often serve as the Safety supervision of the evolution, keeping an eye on everything happening on deck in order to prevent mistakes or injuries. They are also responsible for maintaining communications with the bridge so that both the buoy deck and bridge teams are on the same page during the evolution.

SN Dumais on top of a buoy as other members from Deck Department work on the aid.

BMC Rork and ET1 O’Brien positioning the buoy.

Unfortunately, the Kuluk Shoal aid was the last buoy we were able to service before the weather caught up with us. As we approached our next aid, a NOAA buoy located south of the Aleutians, the weather quickly deteriorated as two low pressure systems started to move in. For the safety of the crew and the NOAA technicians who are joining us on this leg of the trip, it was decided that we would not attempt to service any other NOAA buoys, and we will instead steam east towards Cordova.