Cannibal Rat Ghost Ship' Set To Hit Cornish Coast Stories Denied by Maritime Authorities
|M/V LYUBOV ORLOVA in better days, photo by Lilpop,Rau&Loewenstein, licensed under Wikipedia Creative Commons
Editor's Note: 12/11/2014 Since it was last spotted and tracked the LYUBOV ORLOVA has again disappeared. Much of the public over rates our ability to keep the oceans under surveillance. IF we can't find the "Cannibal Rat Ghost Ship" you have to wonder what elese gets in "under the radar".
The former Soviet cruise ship LYUBOV ORLOVA was subjected to a broken tow line during heavy weather while being towed from Canada last year. A rescue vessel recaptured her and then released her once free of oil rigs and other offshore structures. Canadian authorities than informed the ship owners that recovery of the derelict hull was their problem. The owners basically being broke never sent a salvage tug. While the derelict vessel was about 40 years old she was built to an exceptionally seaworthy ice operations capable standard, being designed for High Arctic tourist cruises. Because of her stout construction speculation was that she could drift about the Atlantic indefinitely. Canadian and later Irish coast guard authorities tracked the vessel for a while then she disappeared from sensors and did show up after an aerial search by the Irish air service. In March distress beacons were received bearing the ship's identity numbers but no ship was found and British maritime and coast guard agency personnel assume that the ship has sunk and that the signals detected in March were probably from inflatable life craft that broke lose from the sinking hull. There have been no sightings of the ship of late and most coast guard authorities presume that she sank, sending her speculative hordes of starving, diseased cannibalistic rats to the bottom with her.
There have been stories published that are based on fact, but speculative fact, that if the ship is still afloat by now it would be over run with hungry cannibalistic rats. An analysis of set and drift from the point where the ship was released from tow and last seen has it , assuming it is still afloat, drifting towards the Coast of Cornwall. Of course in the interest of newspaper sales and audience share the the reports of the set and drift computations ( if the hulk is still afloat) always include the speculation about the population of cannibalistic, diseased rats.
Well, fear not Cornwall, the British maritime authorities seriously doubt the LYUBOV ORLOVA is still afloat and even if it is, they feel it would be difficult for the wreck to get anywhere near a Cornwall beach before being detected by British coast guard forces. We rate it as highly unlikely that the "Ghost Rat Ship" is going to end up on the coast of Cornwall. However we also rate it as highly likely that when the set and drift computations indicate that if she didn't ground at Cornwall the story will re-emerge with the dreaded land fall somewhere else. This is one of those maritime stories with "legs". The electronic media and the tabloids will have a ball with it for maybe another year. The story just has great headline potential, it tends to suck readers in. We of course are in the business of purveying level headed reliable maritime information, so our stories on the same subject tend to be "debunks", but, we gotta love the potential headline draw too. Flaming tabloid or staid reference site we all live and die and by the "audience share". Despite the fact that our coverage of this story is meant to be reassuring and skeptical of the worst case scenario....it's mighty hard to resist the urge to print...."Got ya!".
Editors note: As of 7/26/2014 we have no word of anyone securing or finding grounded the Cannibal Rat Ghost ship