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Be Curious On The Job, Cadets Told

Be Curious On The Job, Cadets Told
Crew of the MV Liahona at Ogea Island in Lau. Photo: Lusiana Tuimaisala
March 29
11:00 2017


Ships engine had broken down. Ships engineers, owners and other pundits tried all possible methods known to man to revive the big diesel to no avail.

Something had to be done one of the Engineers remembered this local who was good at fixing things.

A call was made and a ragged old man with turned up with his bag of tools.

After grunting a few words under his breath the man set about his task making a thorough check of the engine,after a few hums and ah’s hr  took out a small hammer from his tool bag and tapped a part of the engine with great care. Voila! the engine roared to life with gusto to the amazement of the onlookers.

All was well and the ship was underway when the company received a bill from the old man for the work done, $10,000 the amount charged. Infuriated accountants and the owners alike demand an itemised bill.

Sure enough the company received the detailed description on a half a page of foolscap.

n Hammer = $2

n Knowing where to tap = $9998

This urban myth has a deeply rooted question in training and education.

Mumbo jumbo or just plain luck?or years of experience on the job?

If it experiences then how long does it take to aquaria it?

It certainly cannot be taught in a class room. You do need the time on the job but it is hardly adequate.

Many seafarers spend their life at sea but will never know “where to tap”.

It is my hypothesis and one I often tell young cadets is “be curious” when you see anything new ask yourself these questions

n What is it?

n What does it do?

n How does it work?


When you find the answers, even if you don’t become a tap fix expert, at least you would have learnt something new.


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Fiji Rugby 7s rep

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