Thursday, April 7, 2005

Crustacean Fishing Can Make You Pretty Crabby

BURBANK, Calif. (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – The crustaceans aren’t the only ones who feel crabby during Alaska’s crab-fishing season.

Just ask former Navy diver Eric Abrahamson, who took a job on an Alaskan king crab fishing boat last summer and found out first-hand why the job is one of the most dangerous in the world.

He says crab catchers work 18-to-20-hour shifts for days on end, braving rough seas, 800-pound metal crab pots and a decent chance that they’ll fall into ocean and never be seen again.

There’s a 100 percent injury rate for the fishermen, mostly because the lurching seas and the heavy machinery used to haul crabs lead to lots of cuts, sprains and crushed bones.

If that’s not bad enough, Abrahamson only made $2500 last fishing season from his labors because the boat didn’t pull in a big catch.

Finally, fishermen aren’t allowed to eat any of the crabs, though Abrahamson says he and his crew took a few illicit tastes.

He’s one of the crab fisherman followed in the series Deadliest Catch, which premieres April 12 on the Discovery Channel.

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