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The Near-Tragic Collision On Deadliest Catch That Had Us On The Edge Of Our Seats

Less a straight-up reality show than it is a harrowing weekly docu-drama, the Alaska-set king crab-fishing saga known as "Deadliest Catch" has been one of the most consistently thrilling programs on television since it made its Discovery debut back in 2005. Indeed, after almost two decades of high seas, high stakes action, fans continue to tune in to see what fresh chaos the icy Bering Sea will cast at the series' colorful cast of captains, deckhands, and camera people.

The term "cast" is obviously used loosely there as "Deadliest Catch" has fronted real fishermen and women since episode 1. Though questions persist as to exactly how real every major and minor drama cast and crew endure on screen actually is (per Distractify), there's little doubt that one and all are regularly staring down real peril from one episode to the next.  

In fact, there have probably been more close calls over the 18-season run of "Deadliest Catch" than even series producers are comfortable with. Lest you've forgotten some of the more nerve-racking events that have unfolded on "Deadliest Catch," Entertainment Weekly recently celebrated the airing its 300th episode by recounting some of the highlights. And that list includes a collision that could've been a legitimate tragedy for everyone involved.  

A combination of high winds and dodgy driving led to a near disaster on Deadliest Catch

If you've ever watched an episode of "Deadliest Catch," you know the massive crabbing vessels the series follows often get tossed about like toy cars in the choppy waters of the Bering Sea. So much so it's a wonder they don't collide, crash, or roll on a more regular basis. As Outsider notes, collisions do happen from time to time. However they typically occur when ships are out to sea. Perhaps more than the obvious danger involved when two massive floating vessels run into each other, the location of the crash that made the Entertainment Weekly list is what turned it into an almost completely unnecessary tragedy.   

Yes, the collision in question actually occurs while the two ships are still in port. One of those ships is the Summer Breeze, captained by the fiery, longtime "Deadliest Catch" star "Wild" Bill Wichrowski. The other is the Southern Wind, captained by relative newcomer Steve "Harley" Davidson. And yes, the "Deadliest Catch" newb is the offending party in the moment.

As fans can see in the YouTube clip depicting the accident, an impatient Harley sets to maneuvering his boat into position to load up crab baskets while the Summer Breeze is in close proximity. He does so with the winds pulling a hefty 50 knots. Needless to say, the maneuver does not go according to plan, with Bill and his crew watching helplessly as high winds help steer the Southern Breeze right into them. Thankfully, tragedy was narrowly avoided, with the collision resulting in little more than cosmetic damage and a few rattled nerves. Still, given what cast and crew endure while out to sea, one hates to see them facing such danger before they even get there.