It's been just a week (last night) since we packed out our booth and equipment from the 2015 Int'l WorkBoat show. What chaos that is, everybody from 1100 booths trying to move out at the same time, while the Freeman crews are rolling up the acres of carpeting and trying to clear the aisles. After the WorkBoat show -it takes about an hour for the transformation from a thing of beauty with tens of millions of dollars worth of high tech equipment….to what looks like a war zone with trash all over the place. The show people have found out it's easier to just let stuff lie where it's dropped until everyone is gone and then the cleanup begins. We waited 5 hours for our crates to show up at our booth, so we had a birds eye view of the whole process. Once the crates were delivered back to our booth---it only took us 15 minutes to crate up half a ton of bilge water evaporators and bilge filter equipment.
During the show we learned once again from the attendees, the parallel to and about an attitude we detected among the boat operators, regarding getting rid of trash and waste water from on-board their vessels or at their shore facilities. Almost everyone we talked to was afraid to or at least VERY hesitant to treat or separate their bilge water and slops. We talked with folks hauling off 40,000 gallons of water a month at over $1 a gallon, rather than treat it for discharge back to the rivers or harbors. And these vessels were equipped with modern oil water separators. These decision to NOT discharge were made at the executive level and are probably based at least partially on the outdated attitude that the equipment is not reliable or cannot be trusted OR that their people couldn't operate it safely enough.
There was a time, even just a few years back when oil water separators were not reliable and or were too finicky to trust. Those days are long gone, simply because the controls and electronics now are drop dead reliable. Case in point: our BRUTE marine oily water separators are equipped with new state of the art oil content monitors, reliable enough to be USCG/ABS/BV approved to meet the latest very stringent IMO/MEPC 107 (49) requirements. Pollution control equipment now can be PLC and even computer driven and controlled and the electronics that accomplish this are at least as advanced as the Iphone you have in your pocket.
Think about how that technology has changed your life. Even our Bilge Water Filters can be so equipped that they can send info to your phone if there are upset conditions with the equipment. Safe overboard discharges can now be assured.
That's real progress that the industry can't afford to ignore. Controls, like our phones have become so advanced and sophisticated that they are becoming indispensable to our every day life and operations. Change is upon us, and we as an industry have to change our old ideas that controls are not trustworthy. Just look what your smart phone can do.
Even your kids can use it more ...than we can ever learn to.