Page 152 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 27 - 31
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down for rivetting. The Commissioner: Will you read to me one of those rules, so that I may gather how this efficiency is to be regulated by rules. Mr. Edwards: Yes, my Lord. If your Lordship will allow me to complete. If your Lordship will turn to the evidence of Sir Walter Howell given in reply to the Attorney-General, you will find that he says that the standard by which the surveyors are guided in ascertaining what is efficient are these things to which I have referred. The Commissioner: Refer to one of them; read it to me so that I may understand it. I want to know what the Rules are that regulate efficient rivetting. Can anyone tell me where those Rules are? Mr. Edwards: Yes, my Lord. I think Professor Biles has a copy of them, and if he will turn to Section 25, on pages 41 and 42, he will see what I am referring to. The Commissioner: Are there any Rules or Regulations which regulate the hammering in of the rivets? Mr. Edwards: No, my Lord. The Commissioner: Then who is to judge whether that work has been properly done? Mr. Edwards: Your Lordship is asked two specific questions, and I think it would perhaps have been better if your Lordship had looked at them. The Commissioner: I am told by the Professor who sits on my left that there are no such Rules, and I do not see how there can be. Mr. Edwards: Not as to hammering, my Lord. The Commissioner: I am told that hammering is a most important part of rivetting. Mr. Edwards: There are certain tests - tests when they are forged - as to the character of the rivets; there are certain tests as to the kind of rivet holes; there are certain tests as to the flanges of rivets. The Commissioner: Are there any Rules or Regulations as to the hammering of them in? Mr. Edwards: No, my Lord. The Commissioner: Do you agree that the hammering of them in is a very important part of the work? Mr. Edwards: Of course, hammering in is always important. The Commissioner: Then you must leave something to the discretion of the surveyor. Mr. Edwards: Quite. May I say this, my Lord, that inasmuch as what the Marine Department of the Board of Trade consider, and have in this Enquiry officially admitted, that they are for, is for the purpose of testing efficiency guided by a combination of rules - those contained in Lloyd's Rules and Regulations, and those contained in the appendix of the Report of the Bulkheads Committee - at least, it would be advisable to see that these Rules and Regulations, or rules and regulations of a similar character down at least as low in detail as these go, might be made part and parcel of the Regulations of the Board of Trade, so that in every case when trouble comes we may know exactly to what there shall be reference for the purpose of judging and testing the conduct of the different interests that may be affected. That is all I say, my Lord. The Commissioner: Very well. Now, let us pass on, and tell me in what respect they neglected the Rules and Regulations as described by you. What is it that they failed to do? Mr. Edwards: Again, my Lord, I have not yet had, with respect, from your Lordship a ruling as to whether I am to treat - The Commissioner: I am not going to make a ruling for shortening your speech. You must deal with it as though I ruled in your favour. Tell me in what respect they failed. Mr. Edwards: I will do that, my Lord. The view that I take with regard to these Rules and Regulations is that compliance with them must be taken as a sine qua non for the issue by the - The Commissioner: You have said that already. I want you to tell me now which rules it was
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