Life on a tugboat can be dangerous in a storm...

Life on a tugboat can be dangerous in a storm but also peaceful out in the ocean. Credit: Kidsday illustration / Allie Sagat

My dad is the captain on a tugboat. He works for two weeks straight. He has to face dangerous weather. When he’s out in cold weather, the top of the water becomes ice. Then his boat has to go through and break up the ice. Tugboats are made to do that.

The dangers aren’t always out in the water. Sometimes it gets so cold that in the shower when the steam rises, it actually freezes on the bulkhead. Then while you’re showering, the ice falls down and can hit you. One time it was so cold, the toilet froze. I would not like to live on a tugboat.

They have a kitchen on the boat called the galley. That’s where the men eat their meals. During a storm, they may not get to eat. Many may not want to eat if they are seasick. Although most things are bolted down on the boat, when it gets rough, supplies in the kitchen like pots and pans may fall around.

My dad helps push huge things to different places. Tugboats are extremely strong. Being the captain, my dad is the one who steers the ship. With big jobs, he sometimes works with other tugboats. His boat is pretty big, but the things he pushes are humongous. He can push or pull up to 100,000 gross tons. Sometimes my dad works in New York Harbor, and at other times he travels all around the country. He even has to take a plane to work to meet the boat when it’s far away. He likes when they go far out in the ocean. He said it can be very peaceful. It can get very stormy also.

Tugging is my dad’s life. He’s a very busy man. But he likes to be home mostly, since he’s a dad.

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