Page 208 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 6 - 9
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10240. Up the companion ladder would have been the nearest way for them, would not it? - Yes. 10241. But they did not do that; they chose the other way? - They chose the other way? 10242. That is rather curious, is it not? - No, it is not curious at all. 10243. Is it not? - No. 10244. That is to say, they go the whole length of the ship and come up from the well deck at the back, rather than go up the companion ladder leading from the fore deck to the boat deck? - Perhaps the people did not stop to think where they were going to. 10245. If there had been anybody to show them, they would not have had occasion to think? - That may be so. 10246. According to you - and, of course, I am not disputing the accuracy of your figures at all - you took practically the whole of your section, the greater number of them, up; you took two batches? - Yes, but they were not all men. The Commissioner: Oh, no, no. Do not make that mistake. They were not all from his section. A great many of them were from other sections. 10247. (Mr. Harbinson.) All your own went up except the few who refused to go? - All of mine went up except a few. The Commissioner: Some of them went up and went back again. 10248. (Mr. Harbinson.) I will deal with that, your Lordship. (To the Witness.) Except the few who you say refused to go? - Yes; all went to the boat deck. 10249. Except the few who refused to go? - Yes. 10250. With regard to the ones who went up and went back again when they found, I think you said, it was rather cold on the boat deck, did they belong to the first or second lot that you took up? - How do you mean? Please say that again. 10251. You said a number went to the boat deck and returned to their berths? - They belonged to the first lot, because the second lot I saw placed in boat No. 15. 10252. The whole of them? - Yes. 10253. How many of the first lot returned to their berths? - I cannot tell you that. 10254. You cannot give any estimate? - No. I know I saw them to the boat deck. 10255. According to you, all the women and children, from the aft part of the boat who were taken up and who wanted to escape could have done so? - I do not doubt that for a moment. 10256. Can you explain how it was, that being so, that 55 percent of the women of the third class were drowned? - I cannot account for it - No, sir. 10257. I would like you to try and give us your opinion. That is a very high percentage, is it not? - I simply referred to those that I took up. 10258. (The Commissioner.) Were you ever in an accident of this kind before? - Something similar, my Lord. 10259. When was that? Were a great many people drowned? - There was nobody drowned. 10260. Then it was not an accident. Can you form any opinion as to what percentage of third class passengers might be expected to be drowned in an accident like this? - No, my Lord. The Commissioner: Do not ask him such questions - they do not help me at all. Mr. Harbinson: If I may respectfully explain to your Lordship, after what he has said it raises a curious condition of affairs - That all the women could have escaped who wanted to escape, and yet the fact remains, as stated by the learned Attorney-General, that the percentage of the third class female passengers who were drowned was 55. The Commissioner: I know, but you are wasting our time by asking a steward questions about percentages. He does not know anything about such things. Ask him about things that happened and that he saw, and that he can tell us of, and then we will form our own opinion as to what deductions are to be drawn from the facts.
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