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Deadliest Catch Vessels Burn Through A Staggering Amount Of Fuel During The Season

If Discovery Channel's crab-fishing thrill-ride "Deadliest Catch" has taught us only one thing during its 18-seasons and counting run on cable, it's that a fisherman's life is not all it's cracked up to be. In fact, anyone who's indulged in even a single episode of the Alaska-set reality series would likely be quick to tell you the only way they'd ever want to experience the things that captains and crews regularly endure in the name of crabbing is in the warm confines of their own living room.

And yet, to watch "Deadliest Catch" is to understand beyond a doubt that there are those among us capable of not only enduring life in such brutal, unforgiving environments, but absolutely thriving in it. That includes brothers Jonathan and Andy Hillstrand, who've co-captained the vessel the Time Bandit off and on over the series' lengthy run. Along the way, the thrill-seeking Hillstrands have regularly ranked not only among the most colorful of the "Deadliest Catch" cast members, but also the most capable, and knowledgable.

Andy in particular has had a flair for showing off his vast knowledge of the fishing game on "Deadliest Catch" during its tenure. And that knowledge was front and center when he broke down the Time Bandit's fuel consumption in a 2009 interview.

Deadliest Catch vessels can burn as much as 750 gallons of fuel per day according to Andy Hillstrand

Andy Hillstrand spoke about his famed "Deadliest Catch" vessel Time Bandit in an interview with Dockworld. And yes, his knowledge of the crabbing ship is very much of the intimate nature, with the Time Bandit co-captain pointing out the ship is a bit of a family heirloom at this point, "The Time Bandit was built by my father, myself and my two brothers at a shipyard in Charleston, Oregon in 1991." Hillstrand then went into vivid detail regarding the vessel's stats, noting in particular that, "Time Bandit has a 20,000 gallon fuel capacity." He went on to say, "Typically she cruises at 8.5 knots and nine knots is top cruise. At speed we burn 750 gallons per day."

As "Deadliest Catch" fans know, the show regularly discusses numbers when it comes to quotas, coordinates, and other nautical and fishing matters. Fuel consumption is a topic that does not often enter into discussion, however, so Hillstrand throwing that 750 gallons per day figure out there is intriguing to say the least. That's particularly true in the context of what that adds up to over a full fishing season. When prompted for that figure, Hillstrand admitted Time Bandit likely burns through "About 80,000" gallons of fuel in a season.

That's a head-spinning number indeed, though it likely fluctuates dramatically from season to season. Either way, given the harsh conditions ships are subjected to as they navigate the icy waters, and choppy waves of the Bering Sea in the course of a season, it's a little surprising that average isn't significantly higher.