Page 120 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 32 - 36
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Mr. Laing: Reading the ones you have read surely it only means he was going into a place where ice had been reported. The Attorney-General: Oh, no; it means more than that. The Commissioner: It did not give me that impression at the time, Mr. Laing, at all; it gave me the impression at the time that what he meant to convey to me was that they were running into a place where they might expect to encounter ice; not that they were running into a place where they had been advised that ice had been previously. The Attorney-General: May I remind your Lordship further upon this. That discussion which Mr. Lightoller had with the Captain, which he explained as referable to a possible haze, is now, so far as I am concerned at any rate, out of the case. I mean that I have given the greatest consideration to all that my friend, Mr. Scanlan, said, and if I may say so, I do not think anyone could add anything to what he said about it. No one could add anything to what was said, and said very well, by him, but it does not go quite far enough. It only indicates that there was evidence of it and I agree, if I may say so, with the view your Lordship expressed as your own opinion and that of the gentlemen assisting you, that there was no haze. Now my reason for referring to that is this. There was a good deal of discussion during this evidence about the haze and Mr. Lightoller was asked about it, and his point is - I am not going into detail about the haze - that there was some doubt. My suggestion on this evidence is that Captain Smith was very uneasy about this; he was certainly not comfortable in his mind. He was doubtful about it and the conversation that he has with Mr. Lightoller indicates it, because the Captain says: “If it becomes at all doubtful, in the least doubtful, let me know at once.” Now what did that mean? They knew that they were approaching a region in which they might expect - I do not want to put it any higher than that - and there might possibly be a haze, as sometimes happens, and at any rate there might be difficulties; but if the conditions changed at all, if they were in the slightest degree worse than they were, then he wanted to be called and only wanted to be called because he knew they were approaching a region in which they might expect to find ice; that is the full extent to which I desire to push this evidence; and that, I submit, is the absolute, clear and logical conclusion from what has been stated. The Commissioner: Then you really think that that conversation did take place; I do not want you to answer that question. The Attorney-General: I do, my Lord. It is certainly very difficult to say what the exact words were. The Commissioner: My difficulty is that I cannot reject it. The Attorney-General: No, my Lord, and in one sense my difficulty is that I have got to deal with it. I mean to say all this is the evidence which is relied upon against me. When I say against me, I mean against the view for which I am contending now. The Commissioner: My difficulty is that it seems to me to support your view. The Attorney-General: That is my contention, but that is not why it was introduced. The Commissioner: Unless you think it worthwhile, I do not think you need dwell upon this part of the case any more. The Attorney-General: Your Lordship means with regard to Lightoller’s evidence? The Commissioner: Yes. The Attorney-General: I have called attention to those pages. The Commissioner: I have read it very carefully indeed, and have got it all in my mind. The Attorney-General: Very well. Then I do not propose to deal with it any further. Now, my Lord, there are just one or two references that I would like to give to support the view which I have presented to you of the state of knowledge of those who were on board the vessel, apart from the questions we have just been discussing, and this I can do very shortly and without troubling your Lordship to read the reference, but just simply getting it on the Note,
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