Original air date: May 6, 2008
On board the Wizard, the “man killer” strings continued to produce good numbers with an average of 90 crabs per pot. Captain Keith Colburn decided to push ahead and told his brother, Monte Colburn, to skip his turn at the wheel and go on the deck as soon as he woke up. This caused tension between the brothers and resulted in an argument over Monte’s attitude bringing the morale of the deck crew down. In the end, the string filled the Wizard’s hold with 183,000 pounds (83,000 kg) of crab and the boat headed back for their first offload of the season. The Time Bandit finished her first offload of the season and headed on a 28-hour run to a string they left out while they offloaded. A quarter mile from the first pot, the ballast panel on their sodium lights was ripped from the wall and caused a ship-wide power outage. The crew was able to repair the ballast and pick up their string, which had good numbers of crab. Also at Dutch Harbor, Captain Phil Harris of the Cornelia Marie decided to delay the start of his second run due to his superstition about not leaving on Friday. The first string of the second run proved more productive that any string on the first run when the boat pulled in 34,000 pounds (15,000 kg) of crab on this single string. Tensions on board the Northwestern came to a boil when greenhorn Jake Anderson and Deckhand Matt Bradley came to blows after Matt felt threatened by Jake’s eagerness to learn new jobs on deck. On the Early Dawn, Captain Rick Fehst instituted a 20-hour-on/4-hour-off work schedule after having several days of poor numbers. This took a toll on the deck crew, especially greenhorn Bryan Mezich, son of the boat’s owner. After pulling up a string, Bryan took a turn at wheel watch in 25-foot (7.6 m), 60-knot (111 km/h; 69 mph) seas while the rest of the crew went to sleep. Bryan dozed off after 10 minutes and the boat was jolted by a wave while he was asleep, waking the crew. An upset Captain Rick wanted to terminate Bryan for this infraction, but was overruled by Bryan’s father and he was only given a $500 fine.