Rescue Boat Travels on Sea or Ice (Nov, 1928)
Rescue Boat Travels on Sea or Ice
AN ARCTIC boat designed to run both on ice and water has been invented by Harold E. Bailey of Nashville, Term., for the purpose of rescuing polar parties marooned in the great ice fields. Difficulty in reaching the marooned members of the recent Nobile expedition was experienced because of the shifting ice floes with stretches of open water between them. A ship cannot cross the ice fields and dog sleds are helpless in navigating open water. It is its ability to travel in both mediums which makes Mr. Bailey’s rescue ship so adaptable for use in the far North.
In design the boat is very simple. It consists of a stout wooden hull reinforced by metal strips, with spiked side wheels. The prow of the ship is fitted with a steel “saw tooth” blade which splits the pan ice. When the ice field becomes too solid for water navigation, the boat crawls up on the ice and slides along on its steel keel, propelled by the spikes, which have a bulldog grip on the ice.
The navigator sits in a glass-enclosed cabin high above the deck, where he has a clear view of the country around. A crew of half a dozen men can be accommodated in the boat. Radio antenna can be strung on deck if desired. Foghorn, compass, and other instruments are carried.
The boat is useful not only in rescue work, according to the inventor, but can also be carried by the mother ship on polar expeditions, where it is useful in making short excursions where the larger boat cannot travel.