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US Sailors in firefight with an 8ft shark.... and a unicorn...

The best hands to bathe we ever did was a mile or two of Tiamon Island after a big 3 or 4 week long exercise.

Usually you only get an hour or two in the water, but we were there for a whole day.

Had the sea boats razzing around giving people jollies, BBQ on the flight deck.

Basically a beach day, but on a warship instead of a beach.

One of the rare occasions when the grownups just said “**** it, let the lads just do what they want.”

Had to spend most of a day on the beach at Tioman Island waiting to join LUSTY ( possibly the same exercise you refer to). People were certainly jumping from her flight deck for a hands to bathe. No boats available for the reason you mention. We were forced to swim in an attempt to keep cool , and drink cold beer and cocktails from the beach bar. It was torture..........

ETA: Obviously not to the ship........
 
...and how were said plums after hitting the water in your fashionable baggy swimming shorts? Up near your tonsils ? :)

Don't stop there, the lamp is there to be swung....

' Just off Haiphong/Beira/English Harbour/Cocoa Beach we were, in the [ suitably exotic] Sea, ....it was redders and when the Jimmy made the pipe 'Hands to Bathe' it was like Day 1 of the Harrods sale.....etc etc '
OldFarts.jpg
 
"Fall a really long way". Especially as T45 has bulwarks (big metal plates) along the upper deck rather than easily removed guard rails. However, in a Once Only Survival Suit it would be less bad... and I doubt abandoning was included in the T45 design decisions.
Back in the 80's, after Piper Alpha, I had a colleague who left the RAF and got a job on the oil rigs. The newest thing was that you needed to have an offshore certificate to work out there, and part of that was the survival training.

The final exam for his training was a jump into a swimming pool, dressed in a full survival suit, from a very high board, with the lights off. The test was simple, on the word go you jump, hesitate and fail.

The reason for this was a finding from the Piper Alpha inquiry, that found that several of the fatalities had happened on the rig when people had refused to jump. Those who had jumped, and those who tended to pass the training with flying colours, were ex-military (especially ex-army) who were used to obeying orders without question.
 

NSP

LE
Some of the old and bold will be along shortly to swing the lamp and spin dits about swimming in the [Insert name of seven seas/five Oceans here] to amaze the pore shore-bound pongoes
If you insist...

The Med'; anchored off Malta, July 2008:-

Swimming003.jpg


Swimming017.jpg
 
This footage always stuck with Me.Thinking of the poor buggers scrambling down the hull.
I read a book decades ago about a merchant ship that was dressed up like HMS Barham to fool the Germans that she hadn't been sunk. She was moved around various bits of the Med for about 2 years as part of the deception.
 
Hands to bathe on the Illustrious in 97. I think we were in the Indian Ocean. The route in was from the weather decks on 4 deck and out via one of the pilot ladders.
The old man even went over the side in uniform as he challenged the ship to raise a certain amount of money for charity in 5 minutes. If we did it he would jump in. Good to his word he did.
 

DAS

War Hero
More evidence if any needed that the boys & girls from across the pond are thick as a thick thing. More than a minute in and with multiple shots fired and those muppets are still swimming. But not towards the ship.

As an aside. When on a diving exped to Ascension Island a RN black sinky thing came into Georgetown while we were loading our Rib for a dive. They needed more charcoal for on deck BBQ. I have a photo at home somewhere.
 
I read a book decades ago about a merchant ship that was dressed up like HMS Barham to fool the Germans that she hadn't been sunk. She was moved around various bits of the Med for about 2 years as part of the deception.
Admiralty admitted it was sunk 2 months later
 
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e.g ' Call that a shark ?....Bah...when I was in the old Ustafish we....etc etc '

Ping @Ravers ,
@supermatelot ,
@Ninja_Stoker
Apologies, I'm adrift.

As it happens I do recall a 'hands to bathe' dit in the Sargasso Sea, when a Portuguese Man of War (jellyfish thingy) bobbed into the middle of the bunch of Matelots. As the shout went out from the ship, there were lots of confused "What's one of them? " s before a magnificent jacuzzi flailing of arms and legs towards the ship and a scene that resembled the mass beach evacuation in Jaws. Only vertical and a bit faster.
 

Stan_Deesey

Clanker
Apologies, I'm adrift.

As it happens I do recall a 'hands to bathe' dit in the Sargasso Sea, when a Portuguese Man of War (jellyfish thingy) bobbed into the middle of the bunch of Matelots. As the shout went out from the ship, there were lots of confused "What's one of them? " s before a magnificent jacuzzi flailing of arms and legs towards the ship and a scene that resembled the mass beach evacuation in Jaws. Only vertical and a bit faster.


I never took part in a hands to bathe. I don´t remember getting many oportunities. I remember one being piped in the Med, but I was on watch. I can´t recall one ever happening on the one WIGS deployment that I did, but we got plenty of opportunities to swim in the sea when ashore anyway.

I remember seeing the rifle stowed on the bridge when sailing around the Windies, and being told it was there for the protection of swimmers during hands to bathe. I can´t remember if someone was jobbed to be the duty marksman, or if someone from the on watch bridge crew was expected to pick up the rifle and engage the shark(s). I don´t expect that whoever it was had received any extra marksmanship training for the task.

I wondered what would be more dangerous if a shark attack occured during a hands to bathe – the sharks, or the excited matelot blazing away with that rifle only a few feet above the bather´s heads.
 
I never took part in a hands to bathe. I don´t remember getting many oportunities. I remember one being piped in the Med, but I was on watch. I can´t recall one ever happening on the one WIGS deployment that I did, but we got plenty of opportunities to swim in the sea when ashore anyway.

I remember seeing the rifle stowed on the bridge when sailing around the Windies, and being told it was there for the protection of swimmers during hands to bathe. I can´t remember if someone was jobbed to be the duty marksman, or if someone from the on watch bridge crew was expected to pick up the rifle and engage the shark(s). I don´t expect that whoever it was had received any extra marksmanship training for the task.

I wondered what would be more dangerous if a shark attack occured during a hands to bathe – the sharks, or the excited matelot blazing away with that rifle only a few feet above the bather´s heads.
I think I would take my chance with the shark thank you very much. Never trust a matelot with anything smaller than a four inch gun was par avion seniors favourite saying (ex RM Landing Craft crew 19-43-46)
 

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