I noted in the April 2014 edition of Sea Breezes on the front cover, a great photograph of the vessel, Star Lofoten. What caught my eye was the fact that there were no Port or Starboard navigation lights on the extreme ends of the wing of her bridge.
So I went looking for them and I think I found them at the break of the fore castle head, forward of the main deck. There I saw two boxes which I think hold the navigation lights. If this is correct, it seems to me to be a very strange place to position these important lights. What happens when there is a bit of a sea running and a ship is heading into it? There could be a fair amount of spray flying which would greatly obscure the lights. They would also be more open to being damaged in waves from a heavy sea coming in over the bow of the ship. If the position of them has been changed, then it must have been agreed by The International Maritime Organization and ship owners and others with an interest in this area.
In all my time at sea (1959 to 1966) and reading about the sea and having a lively interest in things nautical, I never picked up on the change of position of these lights. I am beginning to suspect that the reason for the change may have something to do with a container ship full of boxes, which may block the lights from a head-on position of an oncoming ship. This is just a small nautical thing of interest I picked up on. I don’t know if any reader would have a comment to make on this area.
GERALD J MAHONY
Maranatha, 18 Cherry Wood, Loughlinstown
Dun Laoghaire, Co Dublin, Ireland