'Deadliest Catch' Season 14, Episode 5 recap: captains hit quotas as ships break down

Ship malfunctions almost brought two captain’s to a screeching halt while injuries almost crippled a third on “Deadliest Catch” Season 14, Episode 5.

The episode opens on the Northwestern, where captain Sig Hansen is still raking in the crab at his sweet spot up north of the rest of the fleet. He’s at 93 percent of his quota and has no reason to believe that he won’t make it if he stays in this position alone. With the season basically over for him and the crew, and his brother Edgar about to take the helm, the crew suggests playing a little prank.

Hansen’s son-in-law is a greenhorn on the vessel who lets the older guys talk him into convincing their captain that his daughter is pregnant. The prank works as Sig has trouble containing how upset he is to hear the news and a deafening silence fills the wheel house. When it’s revealed to be a prank, Sig runs after his son-in-law and tells him that he should sleep with one eye open.

Meanwhile, the Wizard hits some serious trouble as it looks to finish out its season as well. Captain Keith found a sweet spot of his own and he’s about 95 percent of the way to meeting his quota when he notices that his vessel isn’t running the way it should. He puts his chief engineer on the case and they discover that their collision void at the bow of the ship is filling with water. It’s designed to just be a pocket of air that keeps the ship afloat. Left unchecked, it could sink the ship.

The captain calls a stop to all fishing while they handle the problem. After pumping out the water and determining that there’s no leak, they reseal the hatch, which Keith determines was on incorrectly. Just like that, they’re back on track.

Ship issues come up for Jake Anderson on the Saga as well. After taking some bad advice, the first-time captain is behind on his fishing quota. While he’s rushing to catch up, some bad luck strikes when a hydraulic line bursts dousing the deck with a bunch of oil. They require a specific hose to clean it up and make things safe on the deck again, but they can’t seem to find it. Anderson is lucky, as he’s able to get on the radio and borrow the part from another nearby vessel. The incident puts them further behind, but it’s not half as bad as it could have been if it sent them back to shore.

Some good luck finally strikes the Bering Sea when the captains of the Cornelia Marie, who did end up having to go back to shore when two of their crew members were injured, meet with doctors. Although it’s costing them money to be delayed, they know that if they lose two crew members they’ll be forced to find new ones and risk not even coming close to their quota. Luckily, the doctors give both existing crewmen the all-clear to keep fishing. Just like that, they’re back out on the water.

The episode, despite its struggles, ends on a high note as captains Keith Colburn and Sig Hansen celebrate with their crew. After struggling to hit crab early on, Hansen managed to find his sweet spot with some good old fashioned hunting and can now boast being one of the first captains to complete his season. Keith, on the other hand, hit crab early and kept at it until he met his quota. Now he gets to go home a success, but it’s overshadowed by the fact that he’s got a mysterious illness that doctors are still having trouble identifying.

As the credits roll, Colburn finds himself on a plane on his way to medical experts.