Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Deadliest Catch Boats Come Equipped With Two Of Everything In Case Of Malfunction

Whether you're captain or a deckhand on one of the vessels featured on Discovery's "Deadliest Catch," it would seem that the primary concern throughout the working season would be whether or not there's enough crab caught to call the trip a financial success. However, the truth is, the possibility of so many other unforeseen factors could turn the trip not only unprofitable, but disastrous. That's why it's necessary for the brave captains of these boats to take all the necessary precautions to stay successful and safe.

When your crabbing vessel is working in the middle of the treacherous Bering Sea, the one thing that is more important than catching those elusive crustaceans is ensuring the boat isn't susceptible to major issues. With each piece of equipment having its own vital role, one malfunction or mishap may significantly derail a fishing season. If a crab pot crane breaks, nothing is left to help haul in the bounty. If a GPS system goes down, there's no way to track the location of the pot string, or even the boat itself. And if important equipment below deck goes down, the vessel can be a sitting duck, vulnerable to mother nature.

Sometimes a backup plan is as important as the actual game plan. Just like in sports, each position needs a backup so that the whole team won't collapse if one player can no longer compete. The same goes for these "Deadliest Catch" boats, as backup equipment is imperative for any fishing trip. Although this doubling of parts-plan will always be expensive, the investment may save not only the crew's financial season, but also their lives.

You can't cast off without a solid back up plan

When you're catching crab on the Bering Sea, the vessels of "Deadliest Catch" are each their own individual island, floating amongst an endless landscape of rough waters. Many nautical miles from the nearest boat repair station, it is a necessity for these captains to make sure they have a second option for almost every piece of equipment on board, so that there will be no reason to trek back to shore or request Coast Guard help. When Keith Colburn gave Seattle Insider a tour of the Wizard, he detailed this necessary contingency plan.

As Colburn showed off the underbelly of the Wizard, he pointed out this important redundancy rule."Two generators...two steering pumps, two air compressors," he said before directing attention towards above deck. "Upstairs, two GPS's, two radios, two everything." Colburn went on to explain that this plan greatly eliminates the possibility of the crab catching process from significantly slowing down. "So, if this one [generator] goes down while we're fishing, we put this one back up online as quickly as we can," he continued.

Although just about every possible piece of equipment is covered, Colburn explains that there is one essential component that cannot be backed up, and must remain maintained as best as possible. "The only thing we don't have two of on the boat is the main engine," he said. "It's a single screw boat and if it goes down we're kind of in deep water." The equipment back up plan is a pricey investment for every boat. A pretty penny goes into most purchases, such as a backup crane/lift system costing around $75,000 (via BoatingBasicsOnline). But, when it comes to the crabbing season, these expenditures are not only smart, but necessary.