Page 13 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 1 - 5
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you have had time to consider them, perhaps you will let me know whether you think the questions ought to be supplemented. Sir Robert Finlay: My Lord, I saw the questions this morning and at present nothing occurs to me; but of course it will be very carefully considered, and if any further questions occur to me as desirable, of course we will lay them before the Court. I understand the Attorney-General to suggest calling in the first place tomorrow some of the survivors who have reached this country. The Attorney-General: Yes. Sir Robert Findlay: There are some four or five of these persons who may be in a position to give evidence with regard to the nature of the damage to the vessel which caused the sinking. There are only four or five of them, and it occurs to us that it would be most desirable that these Witnesses should not leave, as they may be wanted at a later stage, when the evidence from America and the Witnesses who are now in America are available. My Clients will supply the Board of Trade with the names of these Witnesses, and I would suggest for the Attorney- General’s consideration that their evidence should be delayed; that they should be kept and that their evidence should not be taken until we are in a position to put before the Court other evidence with regard to what they can say which may be of importance. The Attorney-General: I am not sure that I quite appreciate what my learned friend means by the last observation. When the Witnesses have been called, if it is desired to keep four of five of them here, as he says, in case any question arises with regard to Witnesses who may be called from America, of course they will be kept by us, so far as we have power to keep them, and I have no doubt they will remain here. The President: I did not understand that to be quite the suggestion. The Attorney-General: I thought it was from what was said at first, but from what my learned friend said just now, I gather the suggestion was that they should not be called till later. The President: That they should be kept until some additional evidence, without which they cannot be well examined, comes from America. That is what I understand to be the suggestion. Sir Robert Finlay: All I mean, my Lord, was this: I do not think it is desirable that the evidence of these Witnesses should be split up. It may form part of a whole body of evidence relating to an important part of the Inquiry. But I will put my learned friend, the Attorney-General , in possession of the names of the Witnesses. The Attorney-General: If my learned friend will tell me who the Witnesses are and his reasons, I have no doubt we shall be able to agree to keep them. Sir Robert Finlay: Then I understood my learned friend to say that after the evidence of the survivors was taken he would propose to go to the question of construction. The Attorney-General: Yes. Sir Robert Finlay: I quite agree with that, and I do not know that any considerable delay at all events will be necessary in dealing with the evidence on that part of the case. The Attorney-General: No, I think that is a question at the most of two or three days, and I think we shall probably be ready to proceed with that at some time either on Tuesday or Wednesday of next week, assuming we have got rid of the other evidence, which I do not think will take long, because although there are many Witnesses, with a large number of them, as your Lordship knows, it is mere repetition. Sir Robert Findlay: Then my learned friend mentioned another subject which must be discussed upon the Rules and Regulations that have been made with regard to these matters as to preventing collisions. Of course, any general discussion of Rules and Regulations might take place at any time. The only suggestion I wish to make is that the full consideration of the Rules and Regulations could take place with more advantage when the evidence with regard to the circumstances of this particular casualty is before the Court. The President: Undoubtedly.
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