Page 76 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 27 - 31
P. 76
number of Witnesses, Hogg, Boxhall, Symons, Hendrickson and Crawford, this is apparent. The Commissioner: I agree with you that there is evidence of that kind. That, you know, does not account for some of the boats going away with only a dozen people in them. Mr. Scanlan: No, my Lord, it does not. Then there is the evidence of Mr. Lightoller at page 316 with reference to this. It is where he lowered the boat with 40 people in it; it is Question 13953. The Commissioner: There is 13971, “You put as many into No. 4 boat as you thought safe? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) That was about 40. We know some of the boats carried considerably more than 40. - (A.) 65.” I think I am examining. I apparently took a large slice of examination here: “Would the man in the boat to whom you had said, ‘That boat is full; lower her,’ know that she was capable of taking more when she became waterborne? - (A.) Yes, my Lord. (Q.) They would know? - (A.) They would know.” Do you see those questions, Mr. Scanlan? How do you account for some of these boats going away with only twelve people in them? Mr. Scanlan: I am going to comment upon that, my Lord. The Commissioner: It cannot have been want of discipline. Mr. Scanlan: I was going to say this: I have put before your Lordship this consideration that the officers did not know the carrying capacity of the boats or the strength of the falls. The Commissioner: That would not account for only 12. Mr. Scanlan: Very well. There is another consideration which I think is relevant to this branch of the Enquiry, and that is that there was a suggestion that when the boats were lowered they should be brought along when they became waterborne - The Commissioner: Below a gangway door? Mr. Scanlan: Below a gangway, and the passengers might be let down from the gangways. I understand there were two gangway doors, on each side of the ship, on the starboard and on the port. The Commissioner: Yes. Mr. Scanlan: Your Lordship will find this in the evidence of Mr. Lightoller on page 316 at Question 13957. “(The Commissioner.) You had ordered the gangway to be lowered, as I understand? - (A.) What gangway, my Lord? (Q.) The gangway in the forward part of the ship? - (A.) I had ordered the doors to be opened. (Q.) Well, that is what I mean.” The Commissioner: If I said the forward part of the ship, I made a mistake. I think it was in the afterpart of the ship. Mr. Scanlan: Yes, my Lord, but they had those doors in point of fact both forward and aft. There were two sets of gangway doors. I think that is clear from the evidence. “You had ordered the gangway doors to be opened? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) And the gangway to be lowered from that point? - (A.) If there were sufficient time. We had a companion ladder.” Then at Question 13961, “I do not see what is the use of the door if you do not lower the gangway? - (A.) We should probably lower the rope ladder; that was our idea. (Q.) That is the same thing as a gangway. You would provide some sort of communication between the opening of the door and the boat in the water below? - (A.) Exactly. (Q.) Whether it was a gangway or a rope ladder, it does not matter. You had ordered this door to be opened? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) There was no use having that open unless there was some sort of gangway? - (A.) No.” There is a good deal of further evidence as to that, my Lord. We have from Mr. Wilding, speaking of the construction of the ship, that in her construction special attention was directed to the possibility, if the lifeboats had to be used, of having the passengers lowered through those gangway doors. I will refer your Lordship to page 522 of Mr. Wilding’s evidence. Almost at the top of the page your Lordship sees: “(The Commissioner.) The suggestion, I understand, was that those side doors might have been utilised for the purpose of getting passengers into the boats? (Mr. Rowlatt.) Had they all gangways? - (A.) They can be used without gangways.”
   71   72   73   74   75   76   77   78   79   80   81