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Going the extra mile at the docks

We have our very own Olympians on-site in China these days - maybe not at the Bejing Games, but still world-class performers, in a very special league: The Odfjell drydock winter season.  

Senior Technical Superintendents Torleif Solheim and Kim Richard Sætre left Norway four months ago to ensure that a full five of our fine ships get treated to quality maintenance and upgrades, inside and out: Bow Sirius, Bow Cecil, Bow Gemini, Bow Faith and Bow Star.  

Although all five are stainless steel chemical tankers, each ship is unique. In this case, they even belong to different generations: There’s a 20-year age difference between the Norwegian-built Bow Faith from 1997 and the Chinese-built Bow Gemini from 2017.  

A drydocking project is challenging at any time, but five in a row during the Covid pandemic makes it all the more demanding. It takes an expert to lead a drydock session from a to z, and Torleif and Kim Rikard are two of our most experienced maestros. This winter they go the extra mile at the Chengxi yard in China.

The Bow Gemini crew and site team gather for the photographer to mark a successful drydock of the 2017-built, 40,895 dwt stainless steel chemical tanker.

“The best part about being in dock is to solve the many planned projects and handle the unplanned surprises as they come (they always do), and to make the ship as best prepared as possible for the coming years,” Kim Rikard says. 

Torleif agrees: “It is rewarding to work together with the many great Odfjell seafarers, the suppliers and the yard team, and in a joint effort see the ship come into the highest standard. Especially when we install new devices that significantly improve operations for ship and crew.”  

In their time away from home, they have celebrated Kim Rikard’s 50th birthday, Torleif’s 60th, Christmas, New Year and Lunar. If all goes according to plan, Torleif is headed home late February when the Bow Star drydock is completed, while Kim Rikard plans to stay until Bow Faith leaves the shipyard in May.  

What they’re looking most forward to when coming home? “Meet family and friends, of course. And the food. And birds singing in the spring weather.”  

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