Page 185 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 1 - 5
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3573. Was it not just in the immediate vicinity of the “Titanic” that people were struggling in the water? - We did not see anybody struggling where we were. 3574. Were the crew of your boat rowing quite easily? - Two of us were rowing very easy. 3575. I noted you said when you rowed this mile and a half each way you did it remarkably quickly? - Well, I think we could do it again. 3576. Is it fair to assume that if the officer had given instructions on his own account, on his own responsibility, instead of consulting frightened passengers? - They were not frightened. 3577. You might have got back in a short time to the people struggling in the water? - I do not think they were frightened. 3578. But they advised him not to go to the rescue of those people? - I think that was their answer. And he acted on their advice, instead of on his own responsibility. The Commissioner: I understand, Mr. Scanlan, that they were in fear of some iceberg. 3579. (Mr. Scanlan.) What distance from you was the iceberg that you were in fear of? - I think as to the one we saw we could hear the water swish up against it. We could not have been very far from it. We could not have been far because everyone distinctly heard it. The Commissioner: I wish you would put your questions to him quite plainly and distinctly, if you will. Was he of opinion that there was any cowardice on the part of the man who accepted the suggestion of the ladies, because that is, as I understand, what you are suggesting. 3580. (Mr. Scanlan.) If I may say so with deference, my Lord, do not wish to suggest cowardice. What I do feel inclined to suggest is that there was a great lack of discretion on the part of the officer in charge of a boat which could be rowed easily, in not rowing to the rescue of those people. I would not like to say it was cowardice, my Lord. (To the Witness.) Can you explain why it was, with an unfilled boat, the fourth officer failed to go to the rescue of the drowning people? - I have answered the question. 3581. It was because the ladies protested? - Yes. I have answered that question. 3582. If you had had charge of the boat, would you have gone back? - I do not suppose I would have done any more than he did. He acted as an Englishman. Examined by Mr. HARBINSON. 3583. Just one question. Have you any notion as to which class the majority of passengers in your boat belonged? - I think they belonged mostly to the third or second. I could not recognise them when I saw them in the first-class, and I should have known them if there were any prominent people. 3584. Most of them were in the boat when you came along? - No. 3585. You put them in? - No. Mr. Ismay tried to walk round and get a lot of women to come to our boat. He took them across to the starboard side then - our boat was standing - I stood by my boat a good ten minutes or a quarter of an hour. 3586. At that time did the women display a disinclination to enter the boat? - Yes. 3587. Do you know as a matter of fact if reassuring statements had been made to them that everything was all right? - I could not tell you. I could not tell you all those people. 3588. Did you say as a matter of fact yesterday that you heard Mr. Andrews say to some ladies he thought it would be all right? - I think he did not know the full strength of it. 3589. You mean he did not know how dangerous it was? - Certainly not; he could not have known. 3590. (The Commissioner.) I understand you to say that when you got into the boat you did not think the condition of the “Titanic” was dangerous? - Oh, yes, I did; I thought so then, when I got into the boat. 3591. Then I have not got it down right? - I thought so then.
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