Page 53 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 23 - 26
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were quite satisfactory, three were not good, and one was bad owing to the fact that the fullness of the form of the boat tested was not carried sufficiently toward the ends. The Surveyor remarked on the dangerous nature of the tendency towards excessive depth in boats. A further report was received from the Liverpool Principal Officer, dated November 15th, with remarks by two nautical Surveyors, Messrs. Rice and Jenkin. They recommended a minimum depth of 3 ft. 4 in. or breadth by 4, and a breadth of length of 3.5. This was a mere matter of discussion which we went into, and did not quite agree with. “A summary of all these reports was drawn up and completed on January 4th, 1912, and the Principal Ship Surveyor was asked for his observations on the whole question. The Principal Ship Surveyor was away ill at this time and the matter was taken up by Mr. Daniel, an officer in his department acting as his deputy, who reviewed the reports of the Surveyors and their suggestions. He replied on the 27th January. The substance of his report is as follows: - “The question of the Form of Boat is important. Boats are generally built ‘to the eye’ with simply a midship mould. It has been found that boats of the same dimensions differ considerably in actual carrying capacity. Mr. Daniel therefore suggested the following method: - A boat should not be regarded as capable of accommodating the number of persons for which it measures according to the Rules unless it has ½ inch of sheer per foot of length, and unless the half girth amidships is at least 90 percent of the sum of the depth and half breadth, and the mean of the half girths measured at one-quarter of the boat’s length from stern to sternpost is at least 80 percent of the sum of the depth and maximum half breadth. If these conditions are not complied with, the number of persons is to be determined by practical test in the water. A draft amendment of the General Rules on these lines.” I desire this to be perfectly understood, as I have no doubt your Lordship will perfectly understand it. “A draft amendment of the General Rules on these lines was prepared on February 1st, and it was decided to submit the matter again to the Advisory Committee. Memoranda on other subjects were at the same time being prepared, and eventually the whole of the subjects that had been under consideration were, on the decision of Sir Walter Howell (4th April), embodied in one letter, which was addressed to the Committee on April 16th.” 23299. That leads up to the two letters of the 4th and the 16th of April? - Yes, my Lord. 23300. (Mr. Scanlan.) Would you mind saying when it was that you came to the conclusion that with respect to ships of the size of the “Titanic” you should have boat accommodation for 2,730 people? - I came to that conclusion in the month of February, 1911. 23300a. (The Commissioner.) You mean 1911? - Yes, my Lord. I first went into the subject when I was Principal Officer and Emigration Officer for Liverpool. 23301. What was your position then? - I was Principal Officer and Emigration Officer for the Port of Liverpool. 23302. Residing in Liverpool? - Residing in Liverpool. 23303. You were not at the Board of Trade? - I was not at Whitehall; no, my Lord. 23304. (Mr. Scanlan.) You have entertained this opinion constantly since 1st September, 1911, when you attained to this present position? - I have continued of that opinion. 23305. If effect had been given to your opinion the “Titanic” would have been boated up to that extent to give accommodation for 2,730 persons? - She would, possibly. I do not say that she would, because I was not the only one concerned in it. 23306. You were the principal authority? - At one time, latterly. 23307. I mean from September, 1911? - Yes, that is right. 23308. You were the Principal Officer and you were the man to give advice? - Exactly. I gave that advice. 23309. To whom did you give that advice? - I gave that advice to the Marine Department. The advice that I refer to was the advice that the form of boats could not be dissociated from the increase in their number.
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