World Class First Responder: Sally

A four hundred foot long barge ran aground on the eastern shore of Quadra Island a few days ago…there were mumblings about the crew and a chart table but, so far, the official explanation is ‘just plain, bloody stupid!’

The American barge hit the under-surface rocky reef with such force that it went ‘up’ the reef and settled heavily on top.  NO longer floating fully.  The tug disconnected and reported the mishap (first to their company), the crew changed their clothes and Canada and BC then came ‘into’ the picture with the Coast Guard boat, the Cape Palmerston – all 48 feet of her – the local police boat, the politicians and, of course, all government-based hands-on-deck.  A lot of people stood there looking.  

“Never mind, I thought, our World Class Marine Response team is likely already steaming underway to the scene.  After all, the Americans are not telling what is IN the barge and whatever it is is either toxic, polluting or, at the very least, foreign to the marine environment.  They’re a’comming’.  The HAVE to be.  Justin says ‘we are in good hands’.”

Sal said, “They are useless.  Thursday morning the tide is 15.1.  Then it will float off.”

Of course, divers went down, boats stationed themselves off the side of the barge, the Palmerston drew double shifts and, in all likelihood, the local fire-stations were jacked up.  Ooooohhhhhhh…the preparation!  The response!  The energy!

But, surprisingly, there was no World Class response team arrival except that of the 100% unequipped-for-spills Cape Palmerston and her plucky crew of four.  Mind you, we’d have a lot of witnesses for the interviews, court cases and speaking engagements.

The barge hung around for a few days and then on (take a guess…) the Thursday morning high tide, the barge floated off.

“Hey, Sal!  Seems YOU are the World Class Response team.  YOU said it right first!”

“Get me some interviews.  I’ll do some speaking engagements!”

22 thoughts on “World Class First Responder: Sally

  1. I’m shaking my head.
    A few years back i was at the Victoria Shipyard, Ports Canada Graving dock.
    Very windy day.
    Some 3 fuel adsorbent rags had been placed under a forklift that was dripping hydraulic fuel. No big deal.
    The rags blew into the harbour….. O…M…G!
    TEN Ports Canada “blue helmets” ( yes ten because I counted them as they kept coming in two’s and three’s….unbelievable) arrived on scene with clip boards and cameras taking notes, observing the cleanup. Never lifting a finger other than to watch, criticize and complain as two hapless Shipyard employees in a small boat bouncing in the wind and waves…..strung out a Containment Boom around the sheen of fuel expanding from the 3 rags. Then they tossed dozens of oil adsorbent rags everywhere there was an indication of oil. . Bag after bag of rags filled garbage bags .
    In total a pickup truck full of garbage for what was probably less than a 1/4 of a gallon of hydraulic fluid. Less fuel than is spilled during the average weekend fishing trip
    This is what our country has become.
    A nation of bureaucrats justifying their useless positions by lording their minuscule positions of authority over the hapless private sector.
    What this country ( and many others) needs is a deep, prolonged, crushing recession and the riots of public frustration it brings.


    • No confidence,
      I agree with the need for a prolonged crushing recession
      Imagine how the entitled set will react to an early 80s style economic shock.
      We will get there and much worse.
      sorry that septuagenarians among us may not get to see it.
      The hypocrisy we endure daily omg
      The world needs 1000 clones of Vivian Krause to expose just some of the grifting going on.


    • We could pass Laws that demanded two tugs to follow one tug towing a barge.
      It wont matter.
      Stupid trumps everything.
      Shipping fuel, containers, grain whatever… still the cheapest way to go AND what our “just in time ” society demands.

      When a sweat shop in Bangladesh can make t-shirts for pennies a piece and jam 1 million of them into a container to be sold half way around the world in England for 5 Pounds a shirt…… shipping will be around for a long long time…….


    • ALL billionaires are philanthropists ……even Trump. The real question is: how much do they give…..and what for…and for whose benefit? Trump ‘gave’ to the arts by commisioming a painting of himself. All sorts of rich people ‘give’ for rax purposes and having their name om a building. One local dickhead required that all degrees issued by UBC have his name on the parchment. Giving, like so much in a capitalistic society, has been corrupted. Not ALL giving is ugly – most is good. But billionaires have advisors employed to extract the greatest client-gain for the donor. Just the way it is….


      • I guess when I look at most of todays Billionaires….they were self made.
        ie Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, etc.
        Did they start out to be Billioniares?
        Of course not.
        Do they apologize for their hard work making them unbelievably wealthy?
        Of course not.
        Will taxing them into poverty make the rest of the world a “better” place?
        Absolutely not.
        Why would anyone want to work hard to build up a company if the petty and the jealous decided…”Enough, you’re too rich! We’re taking it”

        Socialism at it’s worst.
        I will never be a billionaire but I dont hate the people that are.


    • Free healthcare,
      Free education until 18.
      Free roads and bridges.(no tolls because taxpayers PAID for the damn things already).
      Free elections (that are not usurped by Big Business or Big Union).
      Free press( that are not usurped by Big Business and Big Union).
      Free enterprise ( as long as it doesnt harm the majority).

      I’m sure I’ve missed many many other things…..
      If we make EVERYTHING “Free” then whats the point of even working?
      Striving to better ones position in life?
      Lets just sit around in our socialist “utopia” and wait for it to be delivered…….free.


      • Aaaaahhhhh, NonCon, your ex-Conservative Party biases are showing…methinks. There is a HUGE difference from socialism-sickness and responsible socialism. I am inclined to think that even Sweden’s successful socialism is a bit toooooooooo socialistic but they are closer to getting it right than any UN-FREE free enterprise or corrupted Capitalism that we currently have.
        So, let’s go at it: “If we make EVERYTHING “Free” then what’s the point of even working?”
        NO ONE IS SAYING THAT! Everything free? Never gonna happen. I have been to fully-communistic countries and they all had a vibrant and healthy underground capitalist free market. Ask me sometime about China in the 80’s.
        Free or individual effort will squeeze out – regardless of the official system.
        And NO ONE thinks anything is really free, anyway….NO ONE…not even Bernie Sanders. What they are saying is: “this cost is a social cost and it should be born by all of us.”
        That’s it. It’s that simple.
        Most people accept that fully when talking about law enforcement, military defense, roads, airports, schools and BIG infrastructure. Socialists just ssssttreeetch the definition to include ‘post-secondary education’, all medical health services and some other basic-humanity things.
        What do I think? I tend to be pretty pink, socialist leaning….but I am the first to admit that anything government-run is inefficient and ‘retarded’ by institutionalism. I really do NOT support much in the way of run-by-government. BUT, but, but….NOT taxing solar panels and subsidizing some ‘developments’ in the alt-energy fields is OK by me. I really think that government does best when it does least. So, my sense of socialism begins with them (the parasites) getting out of the way. AND taxing some who don’t pay their way is next in line. THAT means no more billion dollar subsidies for oil and gas. THAT MEANS the oil and gas people pay their way – clean up the wells, clean up the environment, etc. MY socialism means the greedy pigs pay to fix their mess!
        And that might mean TAXING the bastards. Kinda socialism….
        Bill Gates? Great guy. Happy he is rich. But, but, but, he was at MIT when there were only a few ‘mainframe’ computers out there and no students were getting time on it. He got on. Ergo: opportunity. He ‘cheated’ a bit to get computer time. Good on ‘im…..entrepreneurial…..he ‘saw’ that software was the key…..a view accorded only a few….i.e. privilege….and he was ‘connected’ enough to raise money. Good for him. And, in the end, he did rather well for himself. No envy. No resentment. But did he do it all himself? No. Should he share? Yes. Can he? Yes. Is he? Yes. So, what is wrong with that?
        In other words: sharing is socialism. Bill is OK with it. Now let’s convince the remaining Koch brother and the ‘alive’ Epsteins of this world to no longer think that they made their money all by themselves. They did not. They need to share JUST TO BEGIN atonement.


  2. Policies designed to create an educated, healthy, Democratic and vibrant society are an example of ‘’informed self-interest’ by our society that depends on such investments to maintain a civil society.


  3. “So, my sense of socialism begins with them (the parasites) getting out of the way. AND taxing some who don’t pay their way is next in line. THAT means no more billion dollar subsidies for oil and gas. THAT MEANS the oil and gas people pay their way – clean up the wells, clean up the environment, etc. MY socialism means the greedy pigs pay to fix their mess!”

    So basically.
    Free market Capitalism without govt (taxpayer funded) kickbacks and tough Laws that are actually enforced……


  4. It helps to live somewhere to know it well. Good for Sal. Wayne are on our Snowbird trip. We are in central California and so far it’s been sunny and mostly warm. Then next week rain and even maybe some snow at nite or in the forecast. Say what? I could have stayed home to have that. But weather aside, we are enjoying our RV trip. A few weeks to go and the rig goes into storage an we fly home for a break until the end of January. – Margy


    • Good for you. RV’ing is still high on my list of favourite winter vacations. Summer? HERE! Of course. Someday we are gonna HAVE to meet up.


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