Page 199 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 32 - 36
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very improbable, calamity, when no assistance comes to the ship. The Attorney-General: Quite. Of course, dealing with these large vessels they must be in communication with a number of other vessels, because of the track along which they travel, which is after all just like a main road on land, and indeed when they get within a certain distance along the road they are in communication with the land as we know. They were in communication with Cape Race. That is considered more especially in the recommendation of the Committee in July, 1911, because in the recommendation which they made, they took into account the enormous development that there had been in modern science by the application of wireless telegraphy. The Commissioner: Do you suppose, Mr. Attorney, if the “Titanic” had been provided with lifeboat accommodation for all the people on board that any more people would have been saved? The Attorney-General: Well, my Lord, the result of the evidence, to my mind, is contrary to that. I was indicating it a little earlier. The Commissioner: It is pointed out to me quite properly that the wireless installations are only really of service in a trade like the trade of the Atlantic, where there are many steamers within range, and the recommendations will probably apply to vessels all over the globe. The Attorney-General: Yes; but it is quite right to say that they would only apply to vessels on that track? I agree what is meant is that no doubt it would be of much greater value - wireless telegraphy would be of much greater value in a track like that than it would be elsewhere. The Commissioner: Take the voyage from the Cape of Good Hope, for instance, to Australia; a wireless installation would probably not be of great value there because the ships would be too far away to be of any use. The Attorney-General: Of course it all depends. The Commissioner: The ships that you summoned to your aid would be too far away to be of use. The Attorney-General: That is no doubt always a factor to be taken into account. It is of the greatest value, of course, where you have vessels navigating along the same track to and fro, as you have here. It is of some value - I should have thought it must be of some value - to any vessel whatever the track it is following but not of such value. The Commissioner: There is always hope that the message will reach some vessel which is within reasonable reach. The Attorney-General: Or it may be even within reasonable reach of shore. The Commissioner: Or reasonable reach of shore. It would not bring it within reasonable reach of shore, I suppose, from the Cape of Good Hope to Australia. If she had only been a few hours from the Cape of course it would. The Attorney-General: As your Lordship says quite rightly that is one voyage, but you may take a number of others. In that particular one, of course, they would be a long way from land for a very long period. Now, my Lord, if I may go back for a moment just before I say another word about what the Advisory Committee reported, the other gentlemen who reported on this matter gave lower figures. The Commissioner: Yes, but I would rather take the higher figure. The Attorney-General: Very well, the others are before you; we will leave it at that. The Commissioner: Yes. The Attorney-General: Then I will not bother about the other three, but I do think we must deal with the Advisory Committee’s figures, because there you had the result, at any rate, of a very expert Committee. We have gone into it, and it is sufficient to give the figure. 8,300 cubic feet capacity would be the extent of the requirements for vessels of 45,000 tons and upwards
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