Page 207 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 14 - 18
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think so. I think in a short time it will be safer to go North. We shall see no ice in the North directly. It is passing South; it will be all going away from the Northern track. 19298. I am not talking about this particular track, but is there any track, say, for the months of March and April which will be absolutely safe from ice? - I think it is a very rare thing, almost an unheard of thing, to meet ice on our Southern track, the track which the “Titanic” was on, in March. 19299. What about April? - In April we have met it, unfortunately. It is unusual so early as April. 19300. (The Solicitor-General.) Is it a later month in the year when you might expect to meet it on the Southern track more constantly? - Yes. 19301. What is the month? - May and June, I think, are the months that you are more liable to meet ice to the Southward. 19302. You said something to my Lord which I want to follow up. First of all, let me be sure that I have got what you said rightly. Did you say, “It occasionally happens that ice is met with on the Southern track in considerable quantities”? - It has happened two or three times since 1898. I am speaking of icebergs. 19303. When you say it occasionally happens, may I take it that means that you get reports of it from your Captains? - Or from other ships in the agreement. 19304. Are reports made then to the White Star Company by their Captains about such a matter as this? - Always. 19305. Are they reports in writing? - They are by wire. 19306. Do you keep a file of them? - They would be filed away. We have not a special file for those particular telegrams. The practice is, as we receive them we communicate them to the other signatories and they to us, and if the occasion seems urgent we immediately agree on a new track and send the ships further South. 19307. Have you looked to see whether in the month of April the White Star had any reports from any of its Captains about ice? - I am quite sure we had none. 19308. You are sure you had none? - Prior to the sailing of the “Titanic” we heard nothing about ice. 19309. That means, no doubt, that you have looked or had search made? - Yes. 19310. That is prior to the sailing of the “Titanic.” Now, since the “Titanic” disaster have you had reports of ice from your Captains in the North Atlantic? - I do not think our ships have reported ice on this Southern track, but as I have said it has been reported on this exceptionally Southern track, and, of course, ships going to Canada continually see it. 19311. You said something had happened three times since 1898. I think it was the shifting of the track? - Yes, going to this extreme Southern track; one that is not marked on the chart. 19312. On each occasion has it been done by arrangement and agreement between the companies? - Yes, arranged by telegram. I am speaking from memory when I say three, I believe that is correct. 19313. And arranged apparently in the same sort of way in which it has been arranged this time? - That is right. 19314. Take the present arrangement to go on a more Southerly track which you indicate, is that to go on until you agree to stop it or is it to go on for a given length of time? What is the arrangement? - I should think we will keep it up very likely until the next change would come about in the ordinary course, which would be August. 19315. Is that when you go North? - Then we go North. Unless somebody suggests we should go North sooner than that it would not be considered. 19316. Then, if it occasionally happens that you meet with ice on this Southern track, of course a message to a Captain of your ship that there is ice near the Southern track, is obviously a
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