Page 46 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 19 - 22
P. 46
directly in the rush, would therefore float as well as a piece of cork. I do not think the question of a moderate flow of water round the float would materially interfere with its floatability. 20664. Has it occurred to you that by the construction of the ship on the level of the boiler room floor there would be an absolutely clear uninterrupted run? - Yes. 20665. And that the automatic float would not operate until a sufficient quantity of water had come off what I may call the central pathway, so as to come up under the hollow float and operate it? - Certainly. 20666. Has it occurred to you that there might be a huge volume of water in section 1 and in section 2 before the watertight door had been operated by the automatic float between sections 3 and 4? - Let me put it in this way and then you will see. I want to make it clear if I can. I think what you are referring to is, assuming a rush of water from boiler room No. 4 into boiler room No. 3 in the first place, whilst there is a clear run through for the water. The doors being open, there is no constraint at the side, if there was a rush of water through the door it would promptly spread round into that boiler room - 20667. You are not rightly assuming what I mean? - I would like to finish, and then if I am not right you can say so. It would spread round into the boiler room and get round under the plates long before it constituted a rush into the next boiler room. That is the first point. Consequently the float would be operative before the water would get very far through - that is, into the second boiler room - in the nature of a rush. But I quite agree that before the float would operate some, perhaps, three or four hundred tons of water would be able to get through into that boiler room. That three or four hundred tons of water is a small thing in a ship of 50,000 tons. The tanks are bigger than that. 20668. You have not quite assumed correctly what I mean. Just assume for a moment that the water had come with a rush following the breaking of a bulkhead. Assume that for the moment? - Yes. 20669. The water would shoot through the watertight doorway between sections 4 and 3 at a pace quite sufficient to carry it straight through? - Oh, no. 20670. That is what I want? - That is where we differ. The pace would be nothing like sufficient to carry it through. 20671. Why do you say that? - Because, after all, the speed at which that water goes through is dependent on the head of water. The pace at which that water would come through the door could not exceed the pace that is due to the head of water behind it. I take it you will agree with me on that. The head of water behind it at most could not exceed the 40 feet to the top of the bulkhead. I take it you will agree with me on that. Now the speed at which that water would come through is, therefore, known. It would not suffice in the height of the door to carry more than about 12 or 15 feet across the stokehold from the bulkhead, and by the time that it had gone 12 or 15 feet across the stokehold the water that was coming through at the level of the top of the door would have fallen to the level of the stokehold plate. 20672. Now may I put this. Just for the purpose of my question will you assume (I know it is a large assumption) that Section 5 becomes filled up? - Yes. 20673. And that the bulkhead between Section 4 and Section 5 had given way? - Yes. Do you mean the door or the bulkhead? 20674. I mean the bulkhead. That is to say, that suddenly you get precipitated into Section 4 water representing the roomful of Section 5? - No, it cannot, because the bulkhead is inside the bunker. That is why I asked you whether it was the door or the bulkhead. 20675. But the whole of the bunker is not inside? - All except the watertight door is inside the bunker. 20676. But the watertight door does not go the whole height? - No, but the passage, the trunk passage from the bulkhead to the watertight door, is only just the height of the watertight door.
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