Page 38 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 19 - 22
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people. Further, in a ship that is fitted with wireless telegraphy there is no object in the boat going any great distance. I mean if she remains near the scene of the accident she is more likely to be picked up quickly. 20553. I am thinking about the “Californian”? - Well, the “Californian” operator woke up the next day. 20554. I am thinking of a motor-boat reaching the light? - Quite. I agree, far faster than any crew that you could have put into her. 20555. Then it is suggested that a motor-boat could tow the other boats? - Well, it can only do so at the expense of its own speed, to a certain extent. 20556. (Mr. Rowlatt.) Of its own petrol. It could not have towed the other boats to America. No motor-boat could have been sufficiently furnished with spirit to tow the other boats to land, I suppose? - No, I think they were 500 miles from Cape Race - 400 or 500 miles. 20557. (The Commissioner.) Oh, no, I daresay they could not, it is obvious they could not tow them to land, but to a light? - To the light, my Lord, it would be an advantage to have a motor- boat, except so far as the way might have been blocked by ice. 20558. Are motor-boats ever used as lifeboats? - I believe we have supplied them to some companies, my Lord. 20559. You have? - We have. 20560. Harland and Wolff? - Harland and Wolff. 20561. Have supplied them? - To some other companies, but not to the White Star Line. At the companies’ request, I may say, not at our own suggestion. Mr. Rowlatt: There is a Board of Trade regulation upon the subject: “A motor lifeboat approved by the Board of Trade may be substituted for one of the boats required to be kept under davits,” and it is to be kept with proper appliances for putting out into the water, and adequately supplied with fuel, and so on. The Commissioner: It is optional. 20562. (Mr. Rowlatt.) Yes. (To the Witness.) Would there be any object in having more than one motor-boat? The Board of Trade seem only to allow one? - I think if you are going to have them at all for the purpose either of towing or getting into communication with another ship you should have at least three or four. I mean 1 in 16 does not appeal to me as a satisfactory towing arrangement. 20563. Do you understand these Englehardt boats, or did you not supply them? - We purchased them from an outside contractor. I am only generally familiar with them. I do know something about them. 20564. The evidence is that one of them was washed off the deck and never had a chance? - Quite. 20565. But another was found swamped. Apparently the sides were not up. But there was another question about her. There was a question as to whether the plug was in? - Yes. The Commissioner: I understood there was no plug? Mr. Rowlatt: Your Lordship thinks that matter has been cleared up? There is no plug. 20556. (The Commissioner - To the Witness.) There is no plug, is there, in a collapsible boat? - There is, but only in the ordinary sense of the word, not one that has to be put in before she is put in the water to keep her from sinking. There is a plug put in the outer bottom, but it is usually kept in. There is a plug. It is not a plug that has to be put in before the boat is launched, but one that is usually kept in the boat ready for service. 20567. (Mr. Rowlatt.) Is it necessary to have that in position in order that the boat may be seaworthy? - The plug is always in the boat unless you specially take it out for repairs or getting at the inside of the boat. They keep a little water in the boats. 20568. (The Commissioner.) To let the water run out that has collected? - Yes, or got in in any
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