While we have this government shutdown, progress on the new Icebreaker (Polar Security Cutter) has certainly slowed, if not stopped entirely. Meanwhile the Polar Star and her crew soldier on. Naval Today reports:
During this year’s deployment, one of the ship’s electrical systems began to smoke, the Coast Guard said, causing damage to wiring in an electrical switchboard, and one of the ship’s two evaporators used to make drinkable water failed.
The ship also experienced a leak from the shaft that drives the ship’s propeller, which halted icebreaking operations in order to send scuba divers in the water to repair the seal around the shaft. A hyperbaric chamber on loan from the US Navy aboard the ship allows Coast Guard divers to make external emergency repairs and inspections of the ship’s hull.
The Polar Star also experienced ship-wide power outages while breaking ice. Crew members spent nine hours shutting down the ship’s power plant and rebooting the electrical system in order to remedy the outages.
No one knows how long the crew can keep her going, but there is a good chance we are going to see serious problems before the new ship is ready.
Thanks to Lee for bringing this to my attention.