Page 38 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 32 - 36
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the effect would have been disastrous on any boats that were engaged in taking passengers in at the gangway door. Anyhow, I would ask your Lordship to look at the evidence with regard to the orders that were given to the earlier boats. Take first the starboard boats and then the port boats. With regard to the order of launching, on the starboard side there was first No. 7. That is shown on the Table which is agreed. If your Lordship will look at the evidence as to the order given by Mr. Murdoch your Lordship will find that it was to stand by the gangway, or to that effect. That is at page 18. The Commissioner: Which boat are you on? Sir Robert Finlay: No. 7, the first on the starboard side. It is in the evidence of Jewell at page 18, Question 131: “You say Mr. Murdoch was giving orders about lowering the boat; did he give orders to launch her down to the water? - (A.) To lower her right down to the water. (Q.) And what were the orders about - what was she to do? - (A.) He told us to stand by the gangway.” Those two questions relate to No. 7. Question 102 shows this is No. 7. “(Q.) [132] And what were the orders about - what was she to do? - (A.) He told us to stand by the gangway. (Q.) I do not quite know what you mean by that. What is the gangway you are referring to? - (A.) The doors that open in the ship’s side. Just about here (Pointing to the model.) - the door is open continually. (Q.) Amidships? - (A.) Yes.” It is abaft of amidships, I think. The Attorney-General: Yes, it is. Sir Robert Finlay: “Where the gangway would be if she were in port, I suppose? - (A.) Yes, that is right.” That is the gangway by which we all entered into the “Olympic.” The Commissioner: Yes. Sir Robert Finlay: Then he points out the spot on the model with some other gangways. Then Question 139: “(Q.) Now where was this gangway you speak of,” and then he points. That would be abaft amidships. Then “(Q.) And you were told to remain in the water below that gangway? - (A.) Yes. (The Solicitor-General.) Those were your orders. How far off from the ship did you keep? - (A.) We kept right alongside. (Q.) Was the sea smooth? - (A.) Yes, very smooth.” So much for No 7. Then with regard to No. 5, which is the second boat on the starboard side, your Lordship will find the evidence about that - it was given by Mr. Pitman - at page 347, Question 15015: “(Q.) In view of the number that you had got into the boat at this time, did you think that that was as many as this boat would safely carry before she was lowered to the water? - (A.) No, I did not decide how many she should take. (Q.) Who decided that? - (A.) Mr. Murdoch, he came along just then. (Q.) What did he say? - (A.) Well, I jumped out of the boat then, ready to lower away, and he said, “You go in charge in this boat, and also look after the others, and stand by to come along the after gangway when hailed.” (Q.) Did you go in charge of this boat? - (A.) I did.” Then on page 115, Shiers, who was in the boat, give corroborative evidence on the point. Question 4819 is “Did the officer who told you to lower away No. 5 tell you what to do when you got to the water? - (A.) He did not tell me; he told the other officer.” That would be Mr. Pitman. “(Q.) What did he tell him? - (A.) When he got down into the water, to take charge of that line of boats as they came down and stand off at 200 yards.” Your Lordship sees that goes to the other boats as well. “(Q.) Stand off the ship 200 yards? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) And Pitman, I think, was your officer that went in the boat? - (A.) Yes.” Then Mr. Lowe speaks of the order on page 368. Will your Lordship look first at page 367, Question 15818? He is stating the boats that he went to. “(Q.) Did you then go to No. 3? - (A.) I then went to No. 3.” That is one of the boats he went to. Then, over the page, page 368, Questions 15906 to 15912; I think I might almost take 15912 as summarising the matter with regard to the orders given. “(Q.) With reference to these boats that were lowered on your side at which you assisted, did you, after they had been lowered, take any means of communicating with those on board in order to have them filled up through the
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