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How come Greek ferries seem to dock anywhere?


zuludelta
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Over this summer, there have been a few online reports of the PAs issues affecting ARMs departure and arrival times. This got me thinking about the limitations of ports with just one deep-water berth.

How comes even on really small Greek islands you have 30000+ton ro-ro ferries that just seem to back into quayside, lower the ramp and the cars/trucks just drive off? 

(Sorry, if I'm making this sound too simplistic!)

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Little to no tide in the Med so they don't need to bother with linkspans, just build a bit quayside with deep enough water.

Plus they love the Mediterranean Moor down there so no dolphins or fenders, just a last minute handbrake turn, drop an anchor and full astern till you hit something!

 

Edited by Timmy
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The normal berthing practice in the UK for all types of vessels is to tie up alongside. In the Med it is end on as you can get more boats in for a given length of quayside. The ship/boat is held in position by backing in while laying an anchor from the bow (often a surprising distance out). When the stern reaches the quayside a couple of lines are put ashore and adjusted so that passerelle (boarding ladder) or ramp in the case of a ferry can be dropped on the quayside. The anchor line is then hauled in so that the vessel is held in position by the three lines. When leaving, the stern lines are cast off and the vessel moves forward, reeling in the anchor line until it is vertical then pulls it up.

Of course ferries in a hurry just reverse onto the quay and hold themselves there on engine power while the chaotic free for all unloading/loading process takes place. Somehow it seems to work.

Quite apart from the cultural aspect, it wouldn't work in Hull basin as there would be the bow anchor line extending well put in front of the ship not far below the surface ready to snag any other passing vessel!

Edited by cvabishop
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Very interesting answers there.

5 minutes ago, cvabishop said:

 

Of course ferries in a hurry just reverse onto the quay and hold themselves there on engine power while the chaotic free for all unloading/loading process takes place. Somehow it seems to work.

 

BF passengers who complain about the loading process should be given this option...It could be called Brittany Ferries Express Boarding...

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On 12/08/2019 at 16:02, Cabin-boy said:

So presumably the only reason they don't do the same thing in the Hull basin once through the lock is that the ship then stays put for most of the day and they shut down the engines. Ed. 

Not really enough space in King George Dock for Mediterranean Moor but one of the P&O berths (two if you count the disused one) and the Finnlines berth are just a slabs of concrete that the ships ramp lowers on to.  P&O have the complication of needing to be in the right position to allow the gangway onboard.

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On 12/08/2019 at 16:30, cvabishop said:

The normal berthing practice in the UK for all types of vessels is to tie up alongside. In the Med it is end on as you can get more boats in for a given length of quayside. The ship/boat is held in position by backing in while laying an anchor from the bow (often a surprising distance out). When the stern reaches the quayside a couple of lines are put ashore and adjusted so that passerelle (boarding ladder) or ramp in the case of a ferry can be dropped on the quayside. The anchor line is then hauled in so that the vessel is held in position by the three lines. When leaving, the stern lines are cast off and the vessel moves forward, reeling in the anchor line until it is vertical then pulls it up.

Of course ferries in a hurry just reverse onto the quay and hold themselves there on engine power while the chaotic free for all unloading/loading process takes place. Somehow it seems to work.

Quite apart from the cultural aspect, it wouldn't work in Hull basin as there would be the bow anchor line extending well put in front of the ship not far below the surface ready to snag any other passing vessel!

One for you Colin.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ms0XcxHHgEs

 

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  • 2 years later...

Can't find anywhere else to stick this so here goes, two of my favourite things together, the beautiful Nissos Rodos and the lovely island of Chios (the people of the latter, reliant as they are on essentially a monopoly ferry provider, are less fond of the former than I am much of the time I think).

 

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On 12/08/2019 at 17:03, Cabin-boy said:

Well, we saw what happened in Poole when someone tried express disembarkation and that didn't quite work out. Ed. 

We were delayed on Barf one morning as somehow a Condor passenger had gotten on board her by mistake, and we had to wait to depart while they extricated him from the garage.  

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