Page 223 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 14 - 18
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19479. And would I be right in saying that you found it necessary to do so owing to the increasing demand for luxury in ocean travelling? - That is true. 19480. Now, with your experience, which is a very extensive shipping experience, and also in the light of this recent calamity, do you not think now that some of this space which is devoted to millionaires’ suites and extra deck promenades could not possibly be better utilised for the purpose of ensuring the safety of all the passengers? - If there was anything we could do to ensure the safety of the passengers the question of millionaires suites would disappear in a moment. 19481. Do not you think, with regard to the boat deck, the extra space devoted to promenade decks, especially on the boat deck and the A deck, that if the recommendation of my Lord should take the form of a provision for additional boats, emergency boats I mean, lifeboats and collapsible boats, you have no hesitation in saying that that space will be placed at their disposal? - I do not say that space. We will find space on deck for the boats which my Lord recommends us to carry. 19482. Do you think that the provision of such an extra number of boats as would cope with the requirements of all the passengers that would be carried on such a ship as the “Titanic” - that the provision of those boats so high up would in any way endanger the safety of the ship? - You are supposing something which I objected to from the first. 19483. (The Commissioner.) I did not quite catch that answer. Will you repeat it? - I contend my Lord, that it is unwise to do, in the first place, what this gentleman is asking me to express an opinion about. The Commissioner: That I understand. But I understood his question to be whether, if you were to put the boats suggested - I do not know how many that is, double the number than at present are there - the question is if you were to double the number of boats would it imperil the safety of the ship? I do not know whether it means would it interfere with the working of the ship. Mr. Harbinson: It would make her top-heavy, my Lord. The Witness: 60 boats would be required, and I say to put 60 boats on the “Titanic” would be ridiculous in the first place, if it is possible, and I do not think it is possible. 19484. (The Commissioner.) Would it make the vessel top-heavy? - It would certainly make her tender. As to whether it would make her dangerously tender or not would be a matter for the builders. 19485. (Mr. Harbinson.) Am I right in assuming that that opinion is based on the theory of the unsinkability of the ship, that your opinion is that such a number of boats would not be necessary? - Not only on that account, but I have told the Court that to put so many boats as that on the boat deck would make the boat deck so congested that it would leave very little space for those who wish to use the boat deck. 19486. You do not, I understand, suggest to the Court that to carry that number of boats, stowed away elsewhere, would be ridiculous? - I do not suggest that such a number of boats would be carried under any circumstances. 19487. I suggest to you that, in the interest of public safety, there should be boat accommodation for every passenger and for every member of the crew? - In the same interest my answer is that it is not necessary and it is not wise. The Commissioner: You know you can imagine a case of a different kind. People when they are ill require doctors - whether they get any advantage from them I am not sure, but they require them. If there were an epidemic of cholera on the ship would you suggest that sufficient doctors ought to be always carried to attend to all the people suffering from the epidemic. Mr. Harbinson: No, my Lord, because my suggestion there would be that, provided time allowed, one doctor would be adequate to attend to all. The Commissioner: I am assuming an epidemic to which one doctor, or two doctors or half-a-
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