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Warning signs posted on the hulls instruct you to stay at least 500 feet away.
When we agreed it was safe, we breached the 500 foot barrier, and found a place with good cover where we could scope out potential ways aboard.
As news began to mount that the ships would finally be towed out for scrapping, we knew we had to act fast if we wanted to explore and document them.
In May, it was towed out again, this time to Texas, in a swap for its sister ship, the President Lincoln, which was deemed too un-seaworthy to make the voyage to Texas.Of course, things did not always go as planned, but despite several close calls, we were successful in all of our attempts to infiltrate the ships while evading round-the-clock security patrols.These ghost ships, part of the National Defense Reserve Fleet (NDRF) overseen by the U. Maritime Administration (MARAD), were supposed to be ready for duty in the event of a national emergency.On our second trip, we discovered several holes as we readied the boat along the roadside.
Luckily, we found a patch kit at a nearby gas station, and we were back in business.Perhaps a few ships are actually “reserve ready” and could be activated, but the vast majority are well beyond their useful lives and rotting away as they wait in line for disposal.