Wellness at Sea


Part of the problem is too much prefab wallpapered steel panel and not enough wood trim. They have taken fireproofing a bit too far.


Carpets are never good. I spend all day walking threw fuels, grease, oils, seawater, rust, cigarette ash and whatever else is around. Last week we had to clean up a spill of sewage. The last thing I want is carpet in my room to soak up human excrement. I always take off my boots when I enter my room to prevent that nastyness from getting around but who knows if the guy before me was a disgusting slob? At least vinyl can be swept, moped and bleached.

I do miss the older ships that had windows that opened.


Opening windows should be a requirement.


The deck ratings would have my head if I walked out of the ER with my work boots on. How not to make friends. You have got to put a milkcrate with your slippers in it between the messy stuff and the place where people are living, preferably before you even climb the stairs. Greasy stairs make me crazy. Nope, nope, nope. Rather go barefoot.


Mental health is definitely a growing issue with cases like this…


Here is another article from Splash that may be of interest:

Maybe somebody should start a “run for the welfare of seafarers” campaign around the wold??


I object to this line of thinking. As if the lack of wood floors, carpets or opening windows are the problem. Its not. To an outsider accustomed to the comforts of home it’s shocking. After your first or second ship it shouldn’t be.

The problem, as has been noted in these pages so many times, is the social disconnection on board. Everyone goes to their rooms, puts on their headphones and watches DVDs, TV, or plays video games. The lucky few get on sat-phones or the internet.

Swimming pools and saunas won’t solve this problem. As it is we have lounges that are always empty except when a random person goes in to use a microwave.


I used to hear form Thai crew, the young ones that were offshore for months would go troppo and jump overboard, but no news from their field so you never read about it.
Like DP incidents and deaths in the Thai field, all quiet, you only hear from crew that were there.


The same disconnect that’s evident in the general population.


Unfortunately that is very true. For awhile we were watching our grandkids in the evening. All our preteen grand daughter wanted to do once she arrived was to head off into one of the bedroom to facetime with her friends or watch YouTube videos. Her addiction to electronic devices caused a bit of friction.


Crew members socialize during meals and coffee break.

The issue is on many ships even one crew member can make the coffee or meal breaks unpleasant.

I’ve been on several ships where the tension in the mess during meals could be cut with knife. Of course in that case people want to eat quickly and leave.


Is this a Anglo thing? I have heard horror stories from people who have worked with crew from Australia and New Zealand, and myself watched how crew from the British Islands treated their ship. But I have never worked with a crew who did not change out of their work clothes before leaving the dirty mess.

wall to wall carpets are nasty on a ship either way.


“Dirty Mess” may not be as common as you think, but it is becoming more common on newer Offshore vessels in the larger category.

Most rigs and platforms has a rule that boots and dirty coveralls is not allowed past the Change Room. Some don’t even allow clean coveralls in the Mess Room and Recreation Room.


I don’t think it is an anglo thing. I have observed that carelessness or lack of pride in the common spaces and cabins is culturally linked, though. It seems to me that people who come from cultures where men tend not to live on their own before they get married are the worst for this. At home their moms and wives must just follow them around with mops and rags all day long.

The one that makes me ask questions is the eye-level hand print above toilet on the left-hand side.

  1. if you need to lean on something while you piss, why not just sit down?
  2. if your left hand is that nasty, your right hand is prolly the same or worse, and must be holding your…? I dunno, wash your hands first, maybe?
  3. if you always leave a big greasy mark on the wall at eye level, what is it you are trying to communicate? You’re a pig? You have balance problems? You are proud of your span? You have a soap allergy? You hate the duty AB?

If anyone ever asks for my advice to design the washroom, I would ask for one feature: a special, easy to clean surface to the upper left of the toilet at eye-level.


Or the spiky kind of florist’s frog?


“touch here to complete circuit”


Our community has sailing classes for kids 10 to 15. It’s understandable that the girls don’t have much upper body strength but the boys are just as weak from lack of physical activity. We had to ban cell phones to get them to pay attention to the instructors. They can’t wait for classes to be over so they can get back to the devices.
You’re right, they’re addicted.


International maritime charity Sailors’ Society is calling on ship owners to embrace conflict resolution as a matter of urgency, following three knife attacks at sea in almost as many weeks:


As I’ve been reading thru this thread I wonder about the influence cooks have on proper diet and nutrition of the crew. What they fix in the mess can impact both physical and mental health. Even strengthen their immune system, the quality of sleep that they get, regularity, and the clarity of mind while on duty.

Most Dietitians and Nutritionist will tell you that the digestive system is connected to the brain just as Kindergarten thru grade 3 teachers will
speak to the foods kids consume and it’s effect on their classroom behavior.

Sure, most of us know how to put food from the table into our mouths and chew it before swallowing. But how many of us really know what is good for our bodies to assure good health when on the water ? And all too often, those making the purchasing decisions of the food supply for the crew hold the responsibility for the crew members welfare. Will their decision making come from the crew’s input as to just what they like and thus those decisions only consider morale ?
Will the cook(s) be in on the decisions and will they be well informed on the best nutritional foods that can be part of the composite of tasty satisfying meals that build good health. And perhaps better health thru nutrition than what they get when back home on their leave.

As for cooks, do so many of them even know ? Or care ?

I got a kick out of Kracken’s quip, “Is this an Anglo thing” ? LOL

One of America’s most famous Captains was also a writer named
Mark Twain. River Boats in his time were famous for their food. And the boat cooks had reputations that rivaled many Chef’s. Twain once lampooned the frontiersmen he traveled among thru a character he named Boggs. He noticed the lunacy that some displayed as a derivative of their primitive diet.

When Boggs sit down to eat he would proclaim, “Meat first !..spoon victuals to top off on” ! This spirit is still alive and well today.

Twain often addressed the subject of food.


Here is part 1 of a followup to the earlier article about sterile living quarters:

Part 2 to follow.