Page 78 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 23 - 26
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have given very careful consideration to it indeed. 23491. As far as your opinion can now be expressed, do you think that much might be done with longitudinal bulkheads? - Yes, I daresay you could provide a form of longitudinal bulkheads which might under circumstances be of very great value to the ship, but you would have to proceed with very great caution. 23492. Are you familiar with the construction of the “Mauretania”? - I am. 23493. As far as you can say, does that form of bulkhead on the “Mauretania” meet with your approval, and do you regard it as making fairly for safety? - I think it is an improvement for safety, inasmuch as the inner skin is very fairly well removed from the outer skin and the spaces occupied by bunkers. The Commissioner: Three feet, is it not? 23494. (Mr. Clement Edwards.) I think it is six feet. The Witness: It is about ten feet, I think. 23495. (The Commissioner.) What is the space between the outer skin and the inner skin of the “Mauretania”? - I should say about ten feet. I do not know for certain. 23496. (Mr. Clement Edwards.) It must be fairly considerable. On the “Mauretania” the space between the outer skin and the inner skin is utilised, as a matter of fact, for bunker coal? - That is so. 23497. (The Commissioner.) The space is utilised for bunker coal? - Yes. 23498. (Mr. Clement Edwards.) I want to get your view upon this. Two things have been suggested with regard to these longitudinal bulkheads. One is that if you bunker the coal you may be giving a list to one side, because of the coal being worked out. Do you see any difficulty in trimming from either side pretty evenly? - I do not see any difficulty at all as regards the distribution of the bunkers. 23499. It has further been suggested that with longitudinal bulkheads, if there is a blow on one side, with openings to the sea there may be very great danger of a ship heeling that side? - It would depend, no doubt, to a certain extent. The Commissioner: The suggestion was not that there might be a difficulty by reason of your taking coal from one side and not from the other, because you could easily regulate things of that kind. The suggestion was that you might get a great list on one side of the ship if the ship was holed on that side. Mr. Clement Edwards: With respect, there were the two suggestions, and I have just put the question to this Witness. The Commissioner: Who was it said there would be a difficulty because of the fact that you would take coal on one side and not on the other? Mr. Clement Edwards: I think it was Mr. Carlisle. The Attorney-General: I think there is a little misapprehension with regard to that. There was something said about the coal, but it was not that. It was the difficulty of shutting down the watertight doors when you had been taking coal from the bunker. I think that is what my learned friend is thinking of. Mr. Clement Edwards: I am coming to that. My recollection is that Mr. Carlisle spoke about the difficulty of coal being worked out on one side, and there was the difficulty put by Mr. Wilding as to the danger of leaving the bunker doors open in the case of the ship being struck, and the third point was put, which your Lordship is now on, that there was very great danger of a heavy list to one side, if on that side the outer skin was open to the sea. The Commissioner: Yes, and that was the only point. 23500. (Mr. Clement Edwards.) That is the point I want to deal with. (To the Witness.) The suggestion was that there is very great danger in longitudinal bulkheads, because if the ship gets struck on one side there may be a big rush of water, with a consequent list to that side. What do you say as to that? - In the first place, it would depend naturally upon the quantity of coal in those bunkers in the compartment or compartments pierced as the case may be. Naturally you cannot rely
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