Space shuttle Enterprise suffered wing damage when it collided with a New York railroad bridge during its trek to a Manhattan museum.
“The railroad bridge and the Cross Bay Bridge, each presented challenges,” said Dennis Jenkins, who was on board the barge with Enterprise. “The passage through the railroad bridge was narrow with only a few feet of clearance on each wingtip, while the Cross Bay was only a few feet higher than the vertical stabilizer, Mother Nature did not smile on us. Just as the barge entered the railroad bridge, the wind caught it and pushed the right wing into the bridge abutment.”
A good friend of mine is the C/E on the G/T, been on it since before it left China, when I asked him how he liked his new ship, he said Quote" this delete delete delete delete delete, peice of delete delete delete and I can’t repeeat the rest of if because of religous regions.
I read an article saying this was a 2 day tow. I thought JFK was on the sound side of Hell’s Gate and the Intrepid is on the Hudson in Chelsea. How does it take 2 days to do that and why did they take the Shuttle to Bayonne and go under the VZ Bridge? Did they have to go around Long Island?
[QUOTE=KennyW1983;70994]I read an article saying this was a 2 day tow. I thought JFK was on the sound side of Hell’s Gate and the Intrepid is on the Hudson in Chelsea. How does it take 2 days to do that and why did they take the Shuttle to Bayonne and go under the VZ Bridge? Did they have to go around Long Island?[/QUOTE]
You are confusing JFK with Laguardia. Lagardia is the one on the sound side of the Gate.
It was a two day tow around the harbor, accompanied by a fire boat, helicopters, a couple CG Ribs, and news media. JFK is on the south side of NY out on Long Island. They bridge in question is the ‘Jamaica Bay Subway Bridge’. It is a total bitch to tow anything through, much less a barge with a LOT of overhang. But, It’s all good. I am pretty sure the Olde Enterprise won’t be needing the wing tips anymore!!
They actually had to go across Coney Island Channel too. This was just a PR stunt. Although it did have to be moved from JFK to the Intrepid somehow.
I have seen this bridge eat many a competent mariner. ( well, I mean barge). But bringing this shuttle through with overhanging appendages is crazy. From the direction they were coming they were just finishing a hard right hand turn, with a slight side set of current. It is a tough bridge even with no overhang.
There was a LOT more space than what I would call " a few feet" off both wingtips. Judging from those photos on tugster, they were way too far stbd going into the bridge. They actually hit the UPWIND side of the bridge. Look at the planes landing right to left and the flags flying. Very, very poor in my opinion. There also would have been less windage on the main fuselage behind that center portion of the bridge that should have been planned for.
Monday morning QB’ing is for a game. This unfortunately was not a game. It is not that often that our skills as mariners are on display, and this was one of those rare times.
This could have been a disaster.
I guess they will just fiberglass it up for display, but it sure looks to me like they “just winged it” and came up FAIL.
From what I was told by a reliable source they did not use the tail boat and had to much wire out for this particular maneuver. I’ve been this route several times with multiple barges Pushing and towing ( gate lines) but never had the opportunity to showcase with a national treasure.
[QUOTE=rshrew;71938]Looking at the picture I was wondering why they didn’t have a boat on the back made up. Oh well the rest is history.[/QUOTE]
My guess is that they treated it as a routine tow but the consequences of an incident were higher then if they’d been towing an old gravel barge. In hindsight perhaps they should have put the person in charge of the operation on the barge before passing the bridge, that’s how we would handle a dead ship tow.