Page 216 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 27 - 31
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times. I have seen ice in the North Atlantic. (Q.) Have you ever seen ice of this particular dark character to which you have referred in the North Atlantic? - (A.) Yes, twice. (The Commissioner.) In the North Atlantic? - (A.) Yes. (The Attorney-General.) Was that on the outward route to the States? - (A.) On the outward route, yes - once outward and once homeward. (Q.) Do you remember about what time it was of the year? - (A.) In about April, I think, 1897, and again in May, 1903, and again in June, 1910, but that was further north. (Q.) Is this right that you have seen altogether on the North Atlantic tract ice on four or five occasion? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) That is four or five voyages? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) Extending over a very considerable period of time? - (A.) That is so. (Q.) Beginning in 1897? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) Out of those four or five times is it right that you twice saw those dark-coloured icebergs? - (A.) I would not like to say on the last two occasions. My memory will not serve me more than that, I have noticed on one occasion at least more than one berg that did not reflect light.” As regards darkness - it is not necessarily the same thing as blackness and all he says is he has noticed bergs on these occasions that did not reflect light. Then it goes on “(Q.) What I meant was - I want to follow your evidence - that of the four or five occasions of which you have spoken, two of them were occasions on which, as I understood you, you have seen ice of this dark colour? - (A.) Yes, but I would like to add that I have seen at the same time other ice - ice of a different colour. (Q.) Yes, I see what you mean - there would be other ice of a different colour, but amongst it you saw twice icebergs of this dark colour.” The Witness does not accept “this dark colour,” he says, “of darker colour, yes.” Then there is a question as to about how often it was. Then he says in answer to Question 25032, “I was certain of the ‘other occasion,’ but I qualified it only inasmuch as that on the same occasion I saw different coloured ice. (The Commissioner.) Am I to understand that you saw several bergs on these five voyages that you have spoken of? - (A.) Yes, my Lord. (Q.) Or only one berg on each occasion? - (A.) No, on one occasion there were several bergs. On the first occasion, I remember it was a low-lying berg which was evidently a capsized berg. (Q.) You only saw one berg? - (A.) That is all I remember. (Q.) Then on the second occasion you saw several bergs? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) Did you see several on the other three occasions? - (A.) No, my Lord; some of them were just small pieces. I would not call them big bergs, not like the southern bergs. (Q.) Are they called growlers? - (A.) I have never heard that term applied to them, but I believe it is a well-known term. I have read of such, but we never call them growlers; we call them floe bergs when they were not the height of an actual big berg carved off from the land, but a berg that had capsized, having worn out underneath. (The Attorney-General.) You have spoken of the distance at which you would see bergs. You told us, I think I am right in saying, ten or twelve miles in the daytime on a clear day, and five miles on a clear night? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) How far would you see one of these dark bergs on a clear night, assuming it to be 60 to 80 feet high? - (A.) It might be only three miles, depending on the night and depending almost entirely on the condition of the sea at the time. With a dead calm sea there is no sign at all to give you any indication that there is anything there. If you first see the breaking sea at all, then you look for the rest and generally see it. That is on the waterline. I do not say very high, because from a height it is not so easily seen; it blends with the ocean if you are looking down at an angle like that.” I suppose he indicated an angle similar to that which you would look down if you were in the crow’s-nest, 90 feet high. “If you are on the sea level it may loom up. (Q.) That would rather suggest that your view would be that you could detect bergs of that kind better at the stem than you could at the crow’s-nest? - (A.) Better, the nearer you are to the waterline. When we navigated in thick or hazy weather there was always one man on the look-out and one man as near the deck line as possible. (Q.) That is thick or hazy weather? - (A.) Yes, that is thick or hazy weather, or even clear just the same. (Q.) What I want you to tell my Lord is; do you think it is of advantage in clear weather to have a man stationed right ahead at the stem as well as in the crow’s-nest? - (A.) Undoubtedly, if you are in
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