Deadliest fishing vessels burn staggering amounts of fuel per season

Andy Hillstrand spoke about his famous ship “Deadly Catch” Time Bandit in an interview with the publication Dockworld. And yes, his knowledge of the crab ship is very intimate, with the second captain of the Time Bandit pointing out that the ship is now something of a family heirloom: “The Time Bandit was built by my father, me. and my two brothers at a shipyard in Charleston, Oregon, in 1991.” Hillstrand then elaborated on the vessel’s performance, noting in part that “The Time Bandit has 20,000 gallons of fuel.” He went on to say: “She usually travels at 8.5 knots, and nine knots is her maximum cruising speed. At speed, we’re burning 750 gallons a day.”

As Deadly Catch fans know, the series regularly discusses numbers when it comes to quotas, coordinates, and other nautical and fishing matters. However, fuel consumption is a topic that isn’t often discussed, so Hillstrand throwing out those 750 gallons a day is intriguing to say the least. This is especially true in the context of what this adds up to over the course of a fishing season. When asked about that figure, Hillstrand admitted that the Time Bandit likely burns “about 80,000” gallons of fuel per season.

This is indeed a dizzying figure, although it probably fluctuates a lot from season to season. In any case, given the harsh conditions in which ships have to navigate the icy waters and choppy waves of the Bering Sea during the season, it’s a bit surprising that the average isn’t much higher.

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