Page 44 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 27 - 31
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conditions as to whether he can see clearly ahead? - Yes. We have to take a whole lot of things into consideration in a thing of that kind. It is not one or two; it is many. The Commissioner: Do you want to ask him anything, Mr. Scanlan? Mr. Scanlan: No. Examined by Sir ROBERT FINLAY. 25545. You gave evidence in America? - Yes. 25546. May I put one passage to you? You were asked this by Senator Smith. I am reading to you from the evidence in America. “Captain, is it customary to take orders from a director or a general officer of the Company aboard? - (A.) No, Sir. (Q.) From whom do you take orders? - (A.) From no one. (Q.) Aboard ship? - (A.) At sea, immediately I leave port until I arrive at port, the Captain is in absolute control and takes orders from no one. I have never known it in our company, or any other big company, when a director or a managing owner would issue orders on that ship. It matters not who comes on board that ship, they are either passengers or crew. There is no official status and no authority whatever with them.” That is correct? - That is correct. 25547. Did you know Captain Smith? - Yes. 25548. He was a very experienced officer, I think? - Yes, very. 25549. Of very high standing? - Very high, indeed. Mr. Bucknill: My friend, Mr. Dunlop, unfortunately, is unable to be here at the present moment, and he has asked me to apply to your Lordship for leave to read an affidavit, it is a very short one, which Captain Rostron made. The Commissioner: Just postpone it for a minute. Mr. Bucknill: Captain Rostron made it. The Commissioner: Oh, yes. 25550. (Mr. Bucknill.) Perhaps I had better read it and ask him if it is correct. (To the Witness.) On the 4th June did you make an affidavit in New York? - Yes. 25551. Did you say then: “I approached the position of the “Titanic” 41.46 N. L., 50.14 W. L. on a course substantially N. 52 W. (true), reaching the first boat shortly after 4 a.m. It was daylight at about 4.20 a.m. At 5 o’clock it was light enough to see all round the horizon. We then saw two steamships to the northwards, perhaps seven or eight miles distant. Neither of them was the ‘Californian.’ One of them was a four-masted steamer with one funnel, and the other a two- masted steamer with one funnel. I never saw the ‘Mount Temple’ to identify her. The first time that I saw the ‘Californian’ was at about eight o’clock on the morning of 15th April. She was then about five to six miles distant, bearing W.S.W. true, and steaming towards the ‘Carpathia.’ The ‘Carpathia’ was then in substantially the position of the ‘Titanic’ at the time of the disaster as given to us by wireless. I consider the position of the ‘Titanic,’ as given to us by her officers, to be correct.” You swore that? - Yes. 25552. (The Attorney-General.) Does that state all the vessels that you saw? I think it stated two steamers? - No; I saw one more, but it was during the night previous to getting out of the “Titanic’s” position. We saw masthead lights quite distinctly of another steamer between us and the “Titanic.” That was about quarter-past three. 25553. The masthead lights? - Yes, of another steamer, and one of the officers swore he also saw one of the sidelights. 25554. Which one? - The port sidelight. 25555. Do you know of any identification of that steamer at all? - No; we saw nothing but the lights. I did not see the sidelights; I merely saw the masthead lights. Mr. Bucknill: May we have the distance and bearing of these lights that he saw, as far as he can remember?
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