Not to worry. Hahaaahttp://news.nationalpost.com/2014/01/25 ... -atlantic/Five reasons the Lyubov Orlova — and its cannibal rats — are at the bottom of the Atlantic
Tristin Hopper | January 25, 2014 11:58 AM ET
More from Tristin Hopper | @TristinHopper
This week, the internet exploded with speculation that the M/V Lyubov Orlova, a derelict Soviet-made cruise ship cut loose from Newfoundland last winter, was on the verge of smashing into Ireland or the British Isles and unleashing a terrifying cargo of cannibalistic rats.
“Once the rats make landfall, they will be very, very hungry for something besides the raw flesh of their comrades at sea,” read a Thursday post by Gawker.com that soon spawned similar speculation around the English-speaking world.
But while Canada did indeed send a derelict Soviet cruise ship on a course for the Emerald Isle — and while it is indeed populated by a colony of Newfoundland rats — the M/V Lyubov Orlova has almost certainly been consigned to a watery grave:
1. Nobody has seen her for 12 months
The last human eyes laid on the Lyubov Orlova belonged to the crew of the Maersk Challenger, a Transport Canada-contracted supply vessel that was in the process of towing the cruise ship away from offshore oil platforms when the towline broke. The ship had originally found itself adrift in the North Atlantic when it broke free of an underpowered tugboat attempting to haul it St. John’s, Newfoundland to a scrapyard in the Caribbean.
Ever since, even as she bobbed around one of the world’s busiest ocean trade routes, nobody has been able to get a visual on the 90 meter long former cruise ship. And it’s not for lack of trying: Reports of a rat-infested ghost ship have a way of narrowing the eyes of North Atlantic mariners, particularly when they’ve had to worry about getting their freighters to Halifax or New York without hitting the damn thing.
2. If it’s going to hit Europe, it’s way behind schedule
Ireland is only 3,000 kilometers from Newfoundland. At that distance, the Lyubov Orlova would only need to have drifted eight kilometers a day in order to now be entering Irish territorial waters. By contrast, 12 months is all it took for a small fishing vessel cut loose by the 2011 Japanese tsunami to travel 8,000 kilometers and appear off the coast of British Columbia.
And as shall be shown below, although the ship is without power, authorities have been able to receive scattered positioning signals from the vessel’s emergency equipment. The last recorded position, made in March, was less than 700 nautical miles from the Irish Coast. This indicates that the ship was already well past the halfway mark. At that rate, if she was still afloat, she should have been appearing off Galway harbour by June
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3.Ireland isn't worried
4.The Atlantic is a harsh mistress
5.The Lyubov Orlova’s “we are sinking” transponders were activated months ago