6 June 2018 All Of The People Around Us They Say Can They Be That Close

It is not all about science here at Palmer Station, and that's because it is the smallest station that the United States mans in Antarctica, only 44 persons max. McMurdo has over 1000 people and South Pole over 140 in the summer, and both of those stations get much more support staff than we do at Palmer Station. So, here each and every one of us are, custodian, busboy, fireman, trauma team member, and bathroom cleaner, etc.

AEDAED training for the Trauma team.

But this is what makes Palmer such a unique place; we feel like a family here, you don’t leave a mess for someone else to clean up, because more than likely you will be the person cleaning up in the near future. Every week you are responsible for a Galley and Scullery Help (GASH) session, which is cleaning up the cooking and eating area. Saturday’s are the House Mouse work sessions, where you pick from a bucket containing household cleaning jobs such as vacuuming or cleaning the bathrooms. Also, if you are a seasonal employee with Antarctic Support Contractors, you are assigned to one or more “teams” such as Ocean/Glacier Search and Rescue, Trauma, or Fireman.

fire gearTypical fire gear set up at all the doors leading into the buildings.

If you are assigned to Ocean Search and Rescue, or Fireman teams, then you must also attend training back in the states before being deployed. Safety meetings are held every Wednesday and each team meeting once a week on Thursday to go over a specific part of what to expect. Every once in a while, because the cook is off on Sundays, a science team or group of people will even cook dinner for the whole base. We made noodles and red sauce, salad, bread, and cheesecake for our meal!

cookingDr. Almsler working the stove for our cooking night.


Trauma Team

Tell me more about the Search and Rescue, Trauma Team, and the Firemen there. Did your folks get "certified" prior to departure? I did hear from one of my fire partners here at home that her good friend is the doctor there. He is planning on overwintering. Have you met him?

I dont think their is a

I dont think their is a certification, just training for folks on the teams. Yeah, the doc here is from where I grew up, we could commiserate about the Cavs losing in the finals.

Team Member

Keith Smith's picture

Journal Details

Chemical Ecology of Shallow Water Marine Communities Journals

Ask the Team