The Colombo Bay

The Colombo Bay

Book - 2004
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Baker & Taylor
Describes the dangerous world of modern-day merchant shipping as it follows the Colombo Bay, a huge container cargo vessel, on a five-week voyage from Hong Kong to New York via the Suez canal, documenting the lives of its crew, the perils they face, and the growing menace of terrorism. 35,000 first printing.

Blackwell North Amer
Six million containers a year are delivered to United States ports alone. Inside these twenty-foot and forty-foot steel boxes are the thousands of imports - from chinos and Game Boys to garlic and frozen shrimp - without which North America's consumer society would collapse.
To explore this little-known and dangerous universe of modern seafaring, Richard Pollak joined the Colombo Bay in Hong Kong and over the next five weeks sailed with her and her 3,500 containers across the South China Sea, the Indian Ocean, the Mediterranean, and the Atlantic. Here is the story of the ship's unheralded twenty-four-man company; of the unflappable British captain, Peter Davies, a veteran of four decades at sea; of Federico Castrojas, who like the rest of the hard-working Filipino crew must daily confront the loneliness of being away from his family for nine months at a stretch; of Simon Westall, the twenty-one-year-old third mate, who reveals what it is like to be gay in the broad-shouldered world of the merchant service.
It is a world where pirates in the Malacca Strait sneak up behind ships at night in fast power boats, then clamber aboard and either rob the unarmed sailors at gunpoint and escape into the dark or throw the crew into the sea and hijack the ship, plundering her cargo and sometimes repainting her and setting out to do business under another name and flag. It is a world where families desperate to get to the United States or Europe pay thousands of dollars to the Chinese Snakeheads and other criminal gangs, who secrete these wretched migrants in stifling containers; after a week or more at sea these stowaways arrive in the Promised Land either starving or dead.
Pollak sailed on September 13, 2001, into a changed world, on one of the 7,000 container ships whose millions of uninspected boxes suddenly had become potential Trojan horses in which terrorists could transport weapons of mass destruction into the heart of the United States.

Baker
& Taylor

Describes the dangerous world of modern-day merchant shipping as it follows the Colombo Bay, a huge container cargo vessel, on a five-week voyage from Hong Kong to New York via the Suez canal.

Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster, c2004
ISBN: 9780743200738
074320073X
Characteristics: 260 p. ; 24 cm

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