Page 12 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 1 - 5
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board the “Titanic” saw and reported ice before the casualty occurred, and, if so, what measures were taken by the officer on watch to avoid it, and whether these were proper measures and promptly taken. The 14th Question asks what the speed of the “Titanic” was shortly before and at the moment of the casualty, and whether such speed was excessive under the circumstances. My Lord, that concludes the Questions before the casualty. Then the 15th Question is, “What was the nature of the casualty which happened to the ‘Titanic’ at or about 11.45 p.m. on the 14th April last? In what latitude and longitude did the casualty occur?” Now, my Lord, come the questions relating to what happened after the casualty. Question 16 is, “What steps were taken immediately on the happening of the casualty? How long after the casualty was its seriousness realised by those in charge of the vessel? What steps were then taken? What endeavors were made to save the lives of those on board and to prevent the vessel from sinking? Question 17 is, “Was proper discipline maintained on board after the casualty occurred?” Then Question 18 asks what messages were sent by the “Titanic” after the casualty, and at what times and what answers were received. Then Question 19 is, “Was the apparatus for lowering the boats on the ‘Titanic’ at the time of the casualty in good working order? Were the boats swung out filled, lowered, or otherwise put into the water and got away under proper superintendence? Were the boats sent away in seaworthy condition and properly manned, equipped, and provisioned? Did the boats, whether those under davits or otherwise, prove to be efficient and serviceable for the purpose of saving life.” Question 20 is to ascertain the number of passengers and crew taken away in each boat on leaving the vessel, and the question is asked: “How was this number made up, having regard to sex, class, and rating,” and “how many were children and how many adults? Did each boat carry it’s full load, and, if not, why not?” Then Question 21 is to ascertain, “How many persons on board the ‘Titanic’ at the time of the casualty were ultimately rescued, and by what means?” And your Lordship will see that it is asked, “What was the number of passengers, distinguishing between men and women and adults and children of the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd classes, respectively, who were saved? What was the number of the crew, discriminating their ratings and sex, that were saved? What is the proportion which each of these numbers bears to the corresponding total number on board immediately before the casualty? What reason is there for the disproportion, if any?” Then No. 22 is a general question: “What happened to the vessel from the happening of the casualty until she foundered?” And then question 23 is, “Where and at what time did the ‘Titanic’ founder?” Then Question 24 is, “ What was the cause of the loss of the ‘Titanic’ and of the loss of life which thereby ensued or occurred?” No. 25 is the question to which I referred, as to the construction and adequate equipment as a passenger steamer and emigrant ship for the Atlantic service, and Question 26 is, “The Court is invited to report upon the Rules and Regulations made under the Merchant Shipping Acts, 1894 -1906, and the administration of those Acts, and of such Rules and Regulations so far as the consideration thereof is material to this calamity, and to make any recommendations or suggestions that it may think fit, having regard to the circumstances of the casualty with a view to promoting the safety of vessels and persons at sea.” My Lord, those are the questions which we submit to the Court at the present moment, and, as I have indicated and as your Lordship will see, by reference to the Rules, we are at liberty at the close of our case to supplement those questions or to modify them if we think fit. My Lord, I do not think there is anything I can say further. I think that is all that is necessary to trouble your Lordship with today. It indicates what the course of procedure will be, and I have no doubt your Lordship will find it convenient to have the Questions at this early stage, so that you may see to what the evidence will be directed. My Lord, I should propose tomorrow to proceed and open the case on such material as we have at present, and then to call the evidence which is now available. The President: Then, Sir Robert, if you have had time to consider the questions, or if not, after
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