Page 171 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 19 - 22
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for all carried - then you would take each class, and you would say how many for this, how many for that, but you would have no distinction. You would say every ship going to sea, whether an emigrant ship, or passenger ship, or excursion ship, or whatever she is, is to carry sufficient boats to save all on board. There is no necessity to divide into classes at all. Any class of vessel would have the same. 22323. The only difficulty that strikes me is that that is met by making an exception of certain classes? - Quite. I think it would have meant that at once. If they had taken that basis that would have arisen at once; but they did not; they took the basis of gross tonnage. They preferred it. 22324. (The Commissioner.) Do not leave it until you understand it, Mr. Attorney. The Witness: I can only go on repeating what I have said. I am most anxious to explain this as far as I can. I am perfectly clear in my own mind, but my explanatory power must be weak. 22325. (The Attorney-General.) What is clear in your mind will no doubt get clear in ours in time, but we have to get it? - It is my fault no doubt, I quite understand. 22326. Why I referred to the division of vessels into classes was because I understood you to say that was the reason why the Committee did not take the number of lives as the basis, because they were required to divide the vessels into classes? - Yes. 22327. Then what I was puzzled about was that after all you may divide into classes and still require a number of boats according to the number of passengers? - Yes, but the same principle would run through the whole of the classes. 22328. But you may adjust that principle? - Certainly. 22329. (The Commissioner.) You speak at large, and in language that I do not understand. You say the same principle runs through all the classes. What is the principle that you are talking about? - I said that - 22330. No, do tell me so that I may understand your answer. What is the principle to which you have just referred when you said the same principle would run through all the classes. What is the principle? - The principle running through all the classes, as they are at present, is the principle of gross tonnage, of course. The Commissioner: That does not get us any forwarder. 22331. (The Attorney-General.) I have before me the divisions that were made in the classes, and it is obvious that although they proceed upon gross tonnage instead of the number of passengers, they did make a distinction between the various classes of steamers in the requisition for boats? - Oh, yes. The Commissioner: Then, if that is so, I begin to see some daylight. The Attorney-General: They did do it. 22332. (The Commissioner.) Probably. What they did I do not know, was to say, “Now, there are emigrant ships; put them in a class”; and then I expect you will find they provided a larger supply of lifeboats in that class than they did in a cargo-carrying ship, say? - Yes, that is quite right. 22333. And that the difference was measured by the tonnage? - That is quite right. The Attorney-General: No. The Commissioner: No, no. What I said was not intelligible. It was not right. The Attorney-General: The difficulty I have still remains, and I think your Lordship will see it. Dividing into classes does not help you at all except, of course, that you may make a different requisition according to scale. The Commissioner: Yes. The Attorney-General: And you may either say tonnage or number of passengers, and it is possible you may make exceptions. The Commissioner: What they did, I expect, was this. Just listen to me and see if it is right. Here is an emigrant ship, 3,000 tons; here is a cargo boat, 3,000 tons; the number of boats for the
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