Page:Life of John Boyle O'Reilly.djvu/136

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main hatches to give the wind a good chance of blowing out the fire. He will also cast off the lashings from the casks on deck, and hoist the weather clew of the vise-bench to steady the ship.

6. The cooper's chest should be thrown overboard, as it might explode.

7. The first and second officers should see that the port anchor be taken in from the bow, carried aft, and thrown down the main hatchway. It is easy to see the good effect this may have. If necessary, the starboard anchor may be thrown down the fore hold.

8. The third and fourth officers, at the same time, will fire bomblances down the lower hold, and when they have fired away all on board, they will see that the crew extinguish the fire down there by pouring buckets of Stockholm tar on the flames. They will also tar the deck pot to prevent its catching fire.

9. The cook will throw the windlass overboard, and then capsize the slush barrel in the waist, to prevent the men from slipping on the wet decks.

10. The captain will cut away all the fore and main rigging, and, when that is done, he will call the men down from aloft. They may come down the flying jib-stay.

11. When the fire is nearly extinguished by these means, cut away the masts and rig a jury mast at the end of the flying jib-boom.

12. Send five men and two officers to the wheel, and let her luff. When she gets round so that the wind is dead ahead, then hoist the spanker and let her scud.

13. Throw all the cargo overboard to make her light, and head for home.

N.B.—If those rules are carefully observed, it will be found that a fire on board a ship is as harmless as if it were in a large gunpowder magazine on shore.



The main top-gallant cross-tree is twice as long as the flying jib-boom.

The jib-boom should be half as long again as the steer oar of the larboard boat. If the larboard boat has no steer oar, make the jib-boom short accordingly.

The mainyard, in all fast sailing vessels, should be about as long as a rope.

The foreyard is half as long as the mainyard, and three times as thick.

In large ships, where brown paper is used instead of canvas for topsails, it is not necessary to lace the back-stays.