Monday, September 3, 2007

Monday Miscellany: Gone But Not Forgotten

Monday is the day for miscellaneous topics

One of our readers read about Capt. Ray Gaines, who used to lead RV barge trips:

He would connect as many as seven narrow river barges together and load them up with RV´s, becoming a flotilla RV park traveling the inter coastal waterways of the US! To ensure customer satisfaction, these barges had complete facilities including a 150-seat restaurant, laundry, freshwater to drink and waste disposal facilities. Each RV had their own hookups and enough space between them to put out their awnings.

Reader Bob asked, "Can RV-ers still do this?"

Since Sean knew the answer to the question, I thought I'd share it with the rest of you:
The short answer is "No." At least, not in the US.

The longer answer is that as RV barge trips became more popular, the US Coast Guard began to take notice. And, of course, the inevitable red tape sank RV barge trips here forever. The barges are not USCG certified as passenger-carrying vessels, and lack the appropriate fire-suppression and other life safety equipment, life boats, life vests, all-points alerting systems, and the like -- the sorts of things that make cruise ships sort-of OK places for octogenarians to vacation. The fact that people might be asleep in their quarters on such a contraption while underway was an exacerbating factor.

Too bad, really -- I had always wanted to do one of these. Of course, you'd never get away with loading your RV on a train in this country either, as we did in Mexico. So, who knows, perhaps some enterprising outfit will start barge trips in central America some day.

It really does sound like fun. It's worth a look at here just to see the photos of the "RV Barges."

No comments:

Post a Comment

Share your comments on this post! We currently allow anyone to comment without registering. If you choose to use the "anonymous" option, please add your name or nickname to the bottom of your comment, within the main comment box. Getting feedback signed simply "anonymous" is kind of like having strangers shout things at us on the street: a bit disconcerting. Thanks!