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Meet the crew - Chief Engineer Erik Palholmen

Name: Erik Palholmen

Position: Chief Engineer

When did you start working as a Chief Engineer at The Swedish Ship Götheborg?:

Since 2019 I have been working full-time as a chief engineer. But I started working for SOIC already in 2013 and continued to join the ship during her expeditions as a first engineer and chief engineer until 2016.

Before 2013, I joined the ship once in 2005 from Gothenburg to Spain as a volunteer during the first legs of the China voyage! That was a really special experience!


What made you come back in 2013 after sailing in 2005?

One of the engineers got sick and they had a problem to find a reliever for him. A friend of mine talked to the crew manager and asked me to apply. And the rest is history! 😊

Now, you are the only Chief Engineer that is employed. How do you manage now to keep the engine room running?

I am trying to get more volunteers. Fortunately, I already have a couple of them who are helping me. We also have sponsors who are helping us with maintaining some of the equipment as much as they can.

Is it possible for volunteers to help you?

Yes absolutely! We receive volunteers every workday. They register themselves via our website. But before they can help me in the engine room with specific tasks, we need to get to know them and see what skills they bring. It is important to say, that for the engine room, I need volunteers with a specific background or skills, such as an engineer.

Volunteering is also a part of the recruitment process for next summer. It is important that our new crew knows the ship already before they sign on!

Last, but not least: What is your best memory so far?

My best memory was the departure from Gothenburg in 2005. We went out to open sea and there were a lot of people gathering just to wave us off, boats who accompanied us on our way out. There were people everywhere. On the bridge, the quays. It was crazy! We were in the middle of the spectacle. It was so hard to understand that so many people just showed up for this event!

I must add that in general it is also very impressing when we set sails. The moment when you shut the engine off and just feel the power of the wind, let it take over the propulsion.


Are you interested in becoming a volunteer after reading this interview? More information about volunteering can be found here.

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