Page 142 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 14 - 18
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by mutual assent”? - I think on two occasions, when ice has been reported on the Southern track we have adopted a more Southern route, gone further South. I think it has been done on two occasions. 18620. So that I mean when ice is reported apparently what you do is to go further South, to get away from it? - Yes, if a great deal of ice is reported on the track then we should go further South. That would be done by mutual consent of all the steamship companies interested in the tracks. 18621. That would mean this that when you have a report of ice upon the tracks which you usually follow you give directions then to your captains to go further south? - No; I mean if there was a small quantity of ice reported on the track we certainly would not do it; if there was an abnormal quantity of ice reported on the track then we probably would, in conjunction with the other steamship companies, agree to follow a more Southern route. 18622. Do you mean that is only done if the other companies assent? - If any one steamship company suggested going a more Southern route it would be very difficult indeed for any of the other steamship companies to decline to fall in with that suggestion. But that would only be done in the event of an abnormal quantity of ice being reported. 18623. The more Southern route being taken then to avoid the ice that is reported? - That is right. 18624. (The Attorney-General.) Your Lordship will remember there was one question (it is a small point) which we said we would put to Mr. Ismay when he came, about the Marconigram. It is at page 384. I said I would put it to him. I think it is pretty clear what is meant. If your Lordship will look at page 384, Question 17165, there was a Marconigram produced which contained these words: “Mr. Ismay’s orders Olympic not to be seen by ‘Carpathia’“? - Captain Rostron came into my room on board the “Carpathia” and told me he had received a Marconigram from Captain Haddock that the “Olympic” was coming to us as quickly as possible. He suggested that it was very undesirable that our passengers on board the “Carpathia,” who were just settling down, should see the “Olympic,” as it would only probably harrow their feelings; the “Olympic” coming to us could do no good whatever, and I therefore entirely agreed with his suggestion that it was undesirable the ship should come to us. The Attorney-General: I believe the whole of the Marconigram is at Question 17158. I attribute no importance to it. The explanation seemed fairly obvious, but we said we would ask Mr. Ismay so that he could explain. 18625. (The Commissioner.) Are any sailing orders given to your captains before they leave England? - No special orders. 18626. No sailing orders are given to them before they sail on a voyage? - No. We always receive a letter from the Commander of the ship from his last port, to say that everything is satisfactory on board the ship. 18627. (The Attorney-General.) There are letters which are sent, as I understand, by the firm to their captains giving them general directions. I have not referred to them? - That is when they are put in command. 18628. I mean, there is nothing in any of these letters, so far as I have seen, which have been supplied by you, relating specifically to ice? - No, certainly not; those are general instructions. 18629. They are general instructions that they must regard the safety of passengers? - It is a general letter given to all our commanders when they are first appointed to the command of a ship. 18630. As far as I know, those are the only instructions which are given, at any rate in writing? - Those are all. The Attorney-General: I did not trouble your Lordship with them, because I did not think they assisted as they do not relate to ice.
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