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The Captains of Thor

What Really Caused the Loss of the SS El Faro in Hurricane Joaquin
Narrated by: Pete Ferrand
Length: 3 hrs and 23 mins
Categories: Non-fiction, World Affairs
5.0 out of 5 stars (1 rating)

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Publisher's Summary

Was it the captain's fault, as many said? Or did the company, the Coast Guard, and the American Bureau of Shipping all have a hand on the helm of the SS El Faro as she steered too close to Hurricane Joaquin? This is an examination of a tragedy that has been well-researched and investigated - heroically so at times - by the United States Coast Guard and the National Transportation Safety Board. Three very well-done books have been published. All of these efforts produced detailed recommendations and observations and all are publicly available. I commend them to you. 

My effort touches on the broad sweep and events of the tragedy and investigation, but if you want the detailed story of the final voyage of the ship, you’re better off with the other books. My main goal here is to show how the SS El Faro fit into a larger system and culture - one that I have been covering off and on as a journalist and author for 38 years. 

It’s this system, I feel, that will result in another SS El Faro someday unless it is reformed. 

Another note on style. My preference in non-fiction is “narrative.” In other words, whenever I can, I tell a story and show what is happening; I prefer that to “telling” the reader, because I think “showing” is more readily absorbed. Humans learn through stories. Storytelling rather than a lecture better illustrates the emotions at play here, as well as the moods, culture, and vibe of the ship and the industry. This does not mean I take a pure poetic license. The dialogue quoted here is real, not made up. The material is factual.

©2018 Robert R. Frump (P)2018 Robert R. Frump

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  • Anonymous User
  • 18-07-2019

Very Informative! Well Done!

Enjoyed the style of story telling very much. Inspires me to read as much as I can get my hands on to better understand how this happens in 2015!!! Thank you for this great account!

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  • Bill
  • 05-01-2020

The reference to Thor's Hammer...

The reference to Thor's Hammer... dozens of times the term hammer is mentioned in this boy! However, reading this book will affirm that corporations have taken the handle away from the Masters and left them with only the heavy part in the Masters' pockets... that simply Assists in the dragging of the Masters to the sea bottom! That, unfortunately denies a Chief witness to tragedy and allows only the corporate side to be heard at any hearing. Please read "Into The Raging Sea by Rachel Slade FIRST! You'll understand how the greatest volume of information EVER produced by the NTSB aligns both this book and and Ms. Slade's!!!

3 people found this helpful