Rewritten onboard M/T Ek-Star September 2010

M/T Bituma - I was 2nd Officer from 7th of August 1992 to 15th of November 1992

M/T Bituma
M/T Bituma
Picture from www.shipspotting.com   Photo by Frans Sanderse

Bituma
M/T Bituma
Picture from www.shipspotting.com   Photo by Frans Sanderse

M/T Bituma is an tanker for Oil, Bitumen, Coal tar and Creosote, EO, ESP. She can load cargoes with a maximum temperature of 220°C. Built by Werft Nobiskrug, Rendsburg, Germany, Oct. 1981. She's on 2750 DWT and loads 2781m³ in 12 cargo tanks. She is 86,98m long and 12,4m wide.


I didn't take any pictures during my 3 months onboard. What a shame!  

I signed on M/T Bituma in Korsør, Denmark on the 7th of August 1992. I took the night train from Gothenburg to Helsingborg. It's leaving 2 or 3 o'clock in the morning, the very same train we left
Great Belt Link
Great Belt Link
The construction of the Great Belt Link started 1987 and the highway link opened in June 1998. The railway link opened June 1997. The Western Bridge between Sprogø and Nyborg is 6,611m long, and has a vertical clearance for ships of 18m.
Eastern Bridge
The Western Bridge is a combined two-track railway and a four-lane highway bridge from Nyborg to the islet Sprogø. From Sprogø the highway continues to Korsø on the Eastern Bridge and the railway continues in the 8 km long twin bored tunnel tubes of the Eastern Tunnel.
Sprogø
The Eastern Bridge, with its free span of 1,624m, is the world's second largest suspension bridge. The vertical clearance for ships is 65m. At 254 m above sea level, the Eastern Bridge's two pylons are the highest points in Denmark.
Western Bridge is 6,6km long and the Eastern Bridge is 6,8km long. The tunnel is 8km long.
with when we went to Amsterdam and Paris. Reaching Helsingborg and I took the ferry to Helsingør. I don't remember if I had to change train in Copenhagen, most likely and I arrived to Korsør before lunch.

It was summer and the train from Gothenburg had been full of backpackers. And they didn't behave any better than I use to do so it was impossible to sleep. So of course I was tired when arriving to the ship.

And the trotting around in the port of Korsør looking for the ship didn't help. But the ship was discharging bitumen close to the train station so it was not far to walk.

I remember that I stopped at one place asking for directions, and I think it was at a kiosk at the railway station.
- Hmm, Korsør is not that big so everything is pretty much close to the train station in Korsør.

I took a round on deck when I came onboard and then I went to my cabin for a well needed "power nap" and then I was ready to take on my new carrier as a Deck Officer on tanker, my second tanker as 2nd Mate so I was new to this. I have always consider this as my first tanker as 2nd Mate, Arctic 1 was just for a very short period.

Bituma discharged Bitumen in Korsør. This was when the built the Great Belt bridge between Nyborg and Korsør so they needed much asphalt for the highway and they wanted the best to deliver the asphalt so we delivered much asphalt to Nyborg and Korsør.

Most of the time we loaded in Dunkerque, France and in Rotterdam and we discharged most of the bitumen in Denmark and Norway. Norway was nice, we discharge at small bridges all over Norway during the summer. Summer is the time when they are busy repairing their roads.

When the temperature sinks below 5°C it's not possible to work with the asphalt. So we got to see a lot of the small places in Norway where you don't come with normal ships.

The summer was coming to an end when I was joining the ship and we went to Stettin to make a test load of coal tar to Denmark. They delivered a booster pump for us because we discharged from rail wagons. And this was something of the worst I have ever experienced. The jetty was covered in coal tar and even though we took cardboard from the garbage and covered the deck and accommodation it didn't take long before the whole ship was dirty with this shit. We also put this cardboard on the jetty but in vain, everything was so dirty. This was really not a nice place and I was looking forward to when we were going to sign off.

Obviously they were happy with our performance and we got a contract to transport coal tar for a
Pitch
a sticky resinous black or dark brown substance semi-liquid when hot, hard when cold, obtained by distilling tar or turpentine and used for waterproofing.
Danish company when the asphalt season was over.

Back and forth between Stettin and Denmark. One trip we had to load 2 tanks with pitch and the pitch should keep 160°C and the coal tar contained a lot of water. So when we were start discharging the pitch in Denmark there was still some coal tar in the cargo lines and thus turned in to steam instantly.
Of course, the steam made the tanks to overflow and we had pitch on deck. This became solid as rock when it became cold and we had this shit on deck. And on the after part of the deck we had 5cm of rock hard pitch and we had to use sledge hammers to remove it.

I signed off in Nyborg, Denmark (I think it was in Nyborg anyway) 15th of November 1992 together with the Chief Officer and AB in a rented car. We took the ferry from Nyborg to Korsør. I think this was the last time I took the ferry crossing Great Belt, next time I was crossing the Great Belt the bridge was ready.

When taking the ferry between Helsingborg and Helsingør (back then there was no bridge neither over Great Belt nor Öresund) I meet a few people I haven't meet in many years. last time I meet them must have been when I lived in Skåne. One of the girls went to school with me when we were in compulsory school.

"Tura" is what they call it when taking the ferry between Sweden and Denmark, you don't have to leave the ferry when arriving. Just to stay in the restaurant and drink beer and when I meet these people I forgot the time. Well, I took this opportunity to have a few beers and our Chief Officer and the AB continued alone with the car to Gothenburg. When I got my concrete hat on I took a taxi to Gothenburg. Seems like I cannot leave the concrete hat home when I go to the pub.

And I had all my money and everything in the car and where the hell did the Chief Officer live? I found out about his address after a few days and I went to pick up my bag and money. In the nick of time because I had a ticket to Bangkok and my plan was to stay away for a few months in India and Australia before returning to Sweden spring 1993.

So I was off to Gothenburg airport and my flight to Bangkok via Amsterdam. And you can join me by a single click on your mouse!



                  

OK, it has come to my knowledge that we have senior citizens visiting my web page. How hard can it be? So it’s not very easy for them to see the blue coloured links to the next page. So
Jiffy (also jiff)

noun [in SING.] informal a moment: we'll be back in a jiffy.

ORIGIN late 18th cent.: of unknown origin.

So as you understand, in a jiff pretty much depends on your internet.
I put a “Next” button here and I hope that there isn't any problem to understand how to use that one.
So just CLICK the “Next” button on your left hand side and you will be on the next page in a jiff!

Marunong ka mag-tagalog? Walang problema! Magpunta sa kabilang pahina pindutin ang “NEXT” button sa itaas

Faites vous parlez le français? Pas de problème! Pour arriver à la page suivante faites s'il vous plaît un déclic le bouton “Next” ci-dessus!

Haga usted dice el español? No hay problema! Ver la siguiente página sólo hacer clic el botón “Next” encima!

Farla parla l'italiano? Non problemi! Per vedere la prossima pagina lo scatto per favore giusto Il bottone “Next” sopra

Sprechen sie Deutsch! Kein problem! Wenn Sie die folgende Seite sehen wollen gerade klicken der Knopf “Next” oben!

คุณพูดภาษาไทยได้ไหม ไม่มีปัญหา ถ้าคุณต้องการไปหน้าถัดไป ให้กดปุ่ม “Next” ข้างบนนี้


E ni Svenskar och inte förstår Engelska så ska ni skämmas. J och Björn, med det menar jag inte att alla mina stavfel ska ältas varje gång vi träffas.

Flag of Skåne / Skånska flaggan Well, the flag of Skåne, just a BONUS flag.




                  

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