Page 187 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 32 - 36
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The Attorney-General: Well, I do not think there is any complaint to be made about what has happened since April. The Commissioner: Sir Alfred Chalmers was rather emphatic about it. The Attorney-General: I know. He took a very strong view. The Commissioner: He did, and Captain Young said he did not agree. The Attorney-General: Quite, and that was the position. Sir Alfred Chalmers was of opinion that it was unnecessary, and he adhered to that view when he was in the Box; and at any rate that was the opinion that he had formed. The Commissioner: It is not perhaps quite fair to ask you the question, and, therefore, I cannot expect you to answer it, but do you think that there was no delay? The Attorney-General: Delay there certainly was. The Commissioner: Unnecessary delay. The Attorney-General: During what period my Lord? If you are asking during the period from 1894 to 1911, the only answer I think one can make - you may accept it or not, you may think that it was wrong on somebody’s part or not, I do not know, - but the answer is made, and the view that was taken about it was that it was not necessary to provide for it. That was the reason apparently why they had not provided for it right away through. The Commissioner: If it was not necessary then why is it considered necessary now? The Attorney-General: There is a little more light thrown upon it now. It never was thought that you would have to take off the whole of your passengers by your boats and of course it is very easy to make reflections upon what the Board of Trade was doing with regard to this, but the same view was taken abroad. The Commissioner: What occurred to me was that the Board of Trade may be said to have been much too cautious. To be very cautious is a very good thing, but you can be too cautious. The Attorney-General: Yes, but what I was remarking upon was that even in Germany, with regard to which your Lordship, of course, asked questions as to what they had done, and where they did have a scale over and above the scale that we have here, still their scale did not provide for everybody who was to be carried on board the vessel. The Commissioner: I quite understand that. The Attorney-General: Of course, I agree. I pointed out in the course of the case that it was a bigger scale, undoubtedly, than the one that would be required here. The Commissioner: Now you cannot finish today? The Attorney-General: I am afraid not, my Lord. The Commissioner: Obviously, you cannot. When shall we see you again? The Attorney-General: On Wednesday morning, my Lord. The Commissioner: Very well. And you will promise, if I do not interrupt you, to finish on Wednesday? The Attorney-General: I do not like to make a promise with that condition, my Lord, because, if I may say so, I welcome interruptions of all kinds, but I will promise to finish, notwithstanding your Lordship’s interruptions, if I may put it in that way. (Adjourned to Wednesday next at 10.30 o'clock.)
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