Page 53 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 32 - 36
P. 53
Then Hart is a witness who gives some evidence of some importance beginning at page 222, Question 9882: “Can you tell us so far as your third class passengers are concerned, did you go to each third class compartment and rouse up your people? - (A.) I went to each third class room and roused them. (The Commissioner.) Were most of them up, or were they asleep? - (A.) The majority were up. They had been aroused before I got there. (The Solicitor-General.) They are not single cabins, these third class compartments, are they; not single berths? - (A.) They consisted of four-berthrooms and two-berthrooms, and two six-berthrooms. (Q.) And what did you do about the lifebelts? - (A.) I saw the lifebelts placed on them that were willing to have them put on them. (The Commissioner.) Some would not put them on? - (A.) Some refused to put them on. (The Solicitor-General.) Did they say why? - (A.) Yes, they said they saw no occasion for putting them on; they did not believe the ship was hurt in any way.” Then at page 223, Question 9915, and onwards: “(Q.) You would have colleagues, other third class stewards, of course; do you know whether they were doing what you were doing - that is, getting the people up? - (A.) All the men that had rooms were. (Q.) All the third class stewards who had got rooms? - (A.) The third class stewards do not all have rooms. The third class stewards that had rooms went round to their respective sections and were doing the same as I was doing. (The Commissioner.) You mean those who had charge of rooms? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) You mean to say they roused the passengers and tried to get them to put on lifebelts? - (A.) Yes. (The Solicitor-General.) How many third class stewards would there be who would have charge of rooms in the afterend of the ship? - (A.) Eight. (Q.) As far as you know, they were each engaged in doing this? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) Now, just tell us about the next thing? - (A.) I was standing by waiting for further instructions. After some little while the word came down, ‘Pass your women up on the boat deck.’ This was done. (Q.) That means the third class? - (A.) Yes, the third class. (Q.) Anything about children? - (A.) Yes. ‘Pass the women and children.’ (Q.) ‘Pass the women and children up to the boat deck’? - (A.) Yes, those that were willing to go to the boat deck were shown the way. Some were not willing to go to the boat deck, and stayed behind. Some of them went to the boat deck, and found it rather cold, and saw the boats being lowered away, and thought themselves more secure on the ship, and consequently returned to their cabin. Q.) You say they thought themselves more secure on the ship. Did you hear any of them say so? - (A.) Yes, I heard two or three say they preferred to remain on the ship than be tossed about on the water like a cockle-shell.” The same witness, on page 225, Question 10045, is asked, “Then it comes to this, that as far as you can tell us, it was either first or second class people who were in that boat before you got there. Then your people got in and some more people got in from A deck, and those people, you think, were third class people? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) When you left the third class part of the ship the second time, the last time, were there still some third class passengers down there? - (A.) Yes, there were some that would not come to the deck. (Q.) They would not come? - (A.) They would not leave their apartments. (Q.) Of course, by that time you at any rate had realised that this was a very serious accident? - (A.) Yes, but they would not be convinced. (Q.) Did you do your best to convince them? - (A.) Everybody did their best. (Q.) Did you hear other people trying to persuade them? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) On this second journey of yours, the last journey, did you see other stewards, or not, engaged in getting people? - (A.) Yes, I met several on the deck, directing them the way to the boat deck. There was one man at the foot of the companion leading from the sleeping accommodation to the after well deck; there was one man at the end of the companion leading from the well deck to the E deck, and there were others along the saloon and second cabin deck, showing them the way to the boat deck. So that there was no difficulty for anybody who wanted to get to the boats to find their way there. (Q.) There is a third class interpreter is there not? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) Did you see him about? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) Some of your third class passengers are foreigners? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) What was he doing? - (A.) He was trying to keep
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