Page 150 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 10 -13
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calamity does not appear to be very important. The Commissioner: No. 14135. (The Solicitor-General.) It is important what happened to the boats before the calamity. We will leave it, Mr. Lightoller, and try to work it out. There are just one or two general things we want to know. Can you help us at all about this. There were third class passengers who, in the ordinary course of things would not use that boat deck at all. Now, as far as you saw, was anything done to help those third class people to get a fair chance. What happened? - I am not in a position to say what was done, because I never went to a place that would justify me in saying whether anything was or was not done. There is merely the fact that I know there were plenty of third class passengers on the deck, and third class women that I helped in. 14136. You are sure of that? - Oh, I am quite sure - great numbers of them. I naturally noticed - I could pretty well distinguish. The Commissioner: I suppose, Sir John, there are actual records of the numbers saved, about which there can be no doubt? The Solicitor-General: Yes, my Lord; the Attorney-General gave the figures. The Commissioner: I know in his opening he did, and I suppose they will be proved. The Solicitor-General: They can be proved. The Commissioner: The observation is that the percentage of third class passengers saved is much smaller than the percentage of first class passengers? The Solicitor-General: Yes. The Commissioner: There is no doubt about that, apparently, if the Attorney-General’s figures were right. 14137. (The Solicitor-General.) That is the position, yes. (To the Witness.) There are two or three things one wants to ask about - those lights which you saw. You have told me about seeing a light and calling the passengers’ attention to it? - Yes. 14138. Now how did it bear? - A white light about two points on the port bow; whether it was one or two lights I could not say. As to whether it was a masthead light or a stern light, I could not say. I was perfectly sure it was a light attached to a vessel, whether a steamship or a sailing ship I could not say. I could not distinguish any other coloured lights, but merely it was a white light, distinct and plain. 14139. Do you know whether your ship was swinging? - I do not know. 14140. (The Commissioner.) Can you form any estimate of the distance of the light from the “Titanic”? - Yes, my Lord; certainly not over 5 miles away. 14141. Was there any field ice or pack ice about the “Titanic” about this time, anything that could be seen anywhere? - No, my Lord. 14142. Then there was nothing to prevent a vessel, as far as you could see, coming to the “Titanic”? - Not as far as I could see. You are speaking of the nighttime? 14143. I am speaking of the time when you saw this light? - Yes, my Lord. 14144. (The Solicitor-General.) How soon did you observe the light? - I think it was when I was working at No. 6 or 8 boat - No. 6 boat, I should say, when I was helping the people into No. 6 boat. 14145. Did you observe it yourself, or was your attention called to it? - No, I noticed it. 14146. And, as you said, you called attention to it? - Yes. 14147. Other people saw it, too, I suppose. Did you continue to see it when you looked from that time forward until the ship went down, or did it disappear? - I cannot say how long I noticed it. I saw it perhaps half an hour, probably about half an hour. I can recollect seeing it for about half an hour. 14148. Have you any recollection of thinking that it had disappeared? - No. The Commissioner: Are you going to ask him about the rockets.
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