Page 172 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 6 - 9
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9406. You meet constantly field ice on your way to Montreal, do you not? - Yes, but we go round it. 9407. And when you say it is not wise to go 21 1/2 knots - I think your expression was in the neighbourhood of ice - did you mean field ice? - Field ice. 9408. (The Commissioner.) And you have never gone through field ice except when you went to the position where the “Titanic” was lost? - No; I did not pass any ice at all. 9409. You never in your life have been in field ice? - Yes, I have been through field ice when I was in other Companies, my Lord, but not with the Canadian Pacific Railway. 9410. Did you consider it was dangerous when you were with the other Company? - Of course, we took every precaution. If it was very heavy, we would not attempt to go through it. 9411. But you did go through it? - We did go through it, but still we would never attempt it if it were heavy. Light scattered field ice we would go through without any trouble. 9412. But with the present company you would not even do that? - We have instructions not to go into field ice no matter how light it may appear. On my voyage before last I went 30 miles south to clear some ice. I saw some ice and went down 30 miles to the south, and I wrote to my Marine Superintendent and told him what I had done and he said I was quite right in doing so, my Lord. Re-examined by Mr. BUTLER ASPINALL 9413. For what part were you bound? - St. John’s, New Brunswick. 9414. At the time you received the information from the Marconi operator that the “Titanic” was sending out messages of distress, what was your latitude and longitude? - 41° 25’ N., 51° 14’ W. 9415. If so, you were south of the position from which the “Titanic” was sending messages? - Yes. I steered N. 65° E. true, from my position to the position the “Titanic” gave me. (The Witness withdrew.) JOHN DURRANT, Sworn. Examined by the SOLICITOR-GENERAL. 9416. (The Solicitor-General.) This is the Marconi operator on the “Mount Temple,” my Lord. Your Lordship will find that he has heard a great number of messages going to and from the “Titanic,” and he therefore can give us in chronological order a great deal of the story so far as it is told by means of those wireless messages. (To the Witness.) Is your name John Durrant? - Yes. 9417. Are you Marconi operator on board the “Mount Temple”? - Yes. 9418. Which was bound, as we know, for St. John’s, New Brunswick. Were you the only Marconi operator on board? - Yes. 9419. And in your ordinary day’s work what time do you turn in? - Never before 1 a.m. I have a good sleep after the midday meal, and I never turn in before 1 a.m.. 9420. You take a time off? - After my midday meal for about three hours. 9421. And then you can keep on working till 1 o’clock in the morning? - Yes. 9422. At what time do you start work the next morning? - Half-past seven. 9423. What is the range of your Marconi installation on the “Mount Temple”? - I get about 150 miles in the daytime, and something over 200 at night. 9424. Why is it that it is more at night? - They say it is the sun’s rays cause refraction. 9425. Anyhow it is some scientific reason? - Yes.
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