Page 32 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 1 - 5
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“Titanic.” The Attorney-General: We are inquiring into that matter, my Lord, and will produce evidence. I would rather not answer the question until I am in a position to state more definitely what the facts are. We are making the Inquiry which will give the answer to your Lordship’s question. I am not, as I stated just now, in a position to answer it at present. My Lord, the Board of Trade Rules are made under the Merchant Shipping Act, under Section 427. I need not trouble your Lordship with the Section. It is the one which gives power to make rules for providing life-saving appliances. In those rules there is a table which is at page 17 of the print if your Lordship happens to have it. If not I will hand it up in due time. It is sufficient if I state to your Lordship what the effect is. It is only one figure that you need to look at. The Commissioner: I do not know whether I have it. The Attorney-General: No, my Lord, you have not got it. It was proposed to deal with all these rules together, and, no doubt, that is the convenient form, but I thought your Lordship ought to have in the opening what undoubtedly is an important factor - what the Board of Trade Regulations are with regard to life-saving appliances. The only figure with which your Lordship need be troubled is this (it is at page 17): “The table referred to in the foregoing rules, showing the minimum number of boats to be placed under davits and their minimum cubic contents. When the gross tonnage is 10,000 and upwards, the minimum number of boats to be used under davits, 16.” The Commissioner: What was the tonnage of the “Titanic”? The Attorney-General: She had a registered tonnage of 21,831 and a gross tonnage of 46,328. The Commissioner: It does not matter what size over 10,000 tons a vessel may happen to be, 16 boats is the minimum number? The Attorney-General: Yes, my Lord, that is how it stands. Now, my Lord, I propose at once to call the evidence of those who, as I indicated yesterday have returned in the “Lapland,” although they do not properly come perhaps in the order in which we might have wished to call them. The Commissioner: What about tomorrow, Mr. Attorney. The Attorney-General: Well, my Lord, there is some difficulty. We cannot finish this class of Witness, I think, and in any event we have got to get material ready. I think it would be better if your Lordship would say you would resume on Tuesday; then we shall be prepared to go on daily. The Commissioner: You mean not to sit tomorrow? The Attorney-General: Yes. The Commissioner: One of my colleagues is very anxious to know, because he has other matters to attend to. The Attorney-General: As far as I am concerned, I am ready to do anything. The Commissioner: Do you agree, Sir Robert, that we should not sit after this afternoon until Tuesday morning? Sir Robert Finlay: I agree, my Lord. The Commissioner: Very well, then, let it be so. ARCHIE JEWELL, Sworn. Examined by the SOLICITOR-GENERAL. 1. Is your name Archie Jewell? - Yes. 2. And were you one of the look-outs on the “Titanic”? - Yes, quite right. 3. On the “Titanic” did all the able seamen take their turns at the look-out or had you a special
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