Ship Launches into Wicomico River from Chesapeake Shipbuilding - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Ship Launches into Wicomico River from Chesapeake Shipbuilding

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Ship launch at Chesapeake Shipbuilding Ship launch at Chesapeake Shipbuilding

SALISBURY, Md.- About two dozen people on Tuesday morning gathered on the banks of the Wicomico River armed with camera phones and binoculars to watch the latest ship launch from Chesapeake Shipbuilding.

At around 10:30 a.m., the ship slid down the support beams, crashed down into the water, and righted itself in just a matter of a few seconds.  It was a brief few moments of excitement that many in attendance said was worth the wait.

"We were here yesterday and they did not launch it.  And we were here for four hours and we came back this morning to see it and it's awesome," said Franklin Hastings of Laurel, Del.

"It's a chance in a lifetime to see something like this take place, so were were very anxious about it," said Robert McGriff of Salisbury.

There was plenty of preparation work that was done before the launch could take place. Crews at Chesapeake Shipbuilding had to ensure the ship would easily slide down the beams underneath the ship once the supports were cut.  And there had to be plenty of support staff in the water during the launch, including the tugboat that would push the ship back up against the bulkhead so the ship could be completed before finally setting sail.

Among the onlookers Tuesday was a former employee at the shipbuilding company who had been part of plenty of launches during his time.

"For those three seconds of the boat going into the water, there's a lot of work that leads up to those three seconds.  And all of the guys work so hard.  So, just to see that going in, I know it's exciting for them too," said Brandon Keim of Seaford, Del.

So while it may have only been a few seconds of excitement, it was a few seconds those on hand to watch won't soon forget.

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