British Wreck Commissioner's Inquiry

Day 19

Testimony of Edward Wilding, cont.

20242. Now, in connection with this, and before we forget it, can you offer us any theory which would explain the "Titanic" having first taken a list to starboard and then a list to port before she foundered?
- I can, of course, only offer a theory for it; it does not amount to proof. But as to the slight list at first to starboard, your Lordship will remember that it is in evidence that the Post Office and baggage room was flooded in No. 3 hold at an early stage. To a certain extent there are partition bulkheads in the vessel on G deck - partition bulkheads on the port side of G deck - which would restrain for a brief time the water from entering the space which is filled by third class cabins.

20243. (The Commissioner.) That is to say, the water for a time would be confined to the starboard side of the ship?
- Not absolutely strictly confined, but it would be more difficult for the water to rise on the port side than on the starboard side, and there would be an excess of water on the starboard side.

20244. It would be restricted in its flow?
- It would be restricted in its flow.

20245. From the starboard to the port side of the ship?
- Yes.

20246. Causing a slight list to starboard?
- That would account for a slight list to starboard. Then, later on, the water got above E deck; we have heard of it in the working alleyway. When the water got above E deck, the broad passage we know as Scotland Road, the third class alleyway leading aft on the port side offers a much easier road for the water, and there is a much larger flow into it on that port side, because the only way the water could get into the first class alleyway on the starboard side is up the stair which comes from the Post Office; whereas there are several stairways and hatches at the former end of the deck, all of which could pour water, or enable water coming up through them to get along the working passage on the port side.

20247. The broad working passage on the port side which is called Scotland Road?
- Yes, the 9 feet passage.

20248. There is a much broader passage on the port side than there is on the starboard side?
- Quite right, My Lord, and also this water is restricted by the non-watertight steel door at the forward end of the first class passage on the starboard side from going into the starboard passage.

Mr. Rowlatt:
Your Lordship sees that door.

The Witness:
Yes, it is not watertight.

20249. (The Commissioner.) It is not watertight, but it is a door?
- Yes, and a fairly substantial door.

20250. That may explain it. Of course, if the ship had remained afloat, all these differences in lists would have tended to right themselves?
- Eventually, My Lord, yes. Your Lordship will notice that all the stewards' rooms open off the working passage and would offer considerable means for water to get over to the port side from the working passage, and the doors were opened because all the stewards had come out of them. Then when the ship was in this condition she was beginning to get a serious reduction in her stability, and any weight on the port side would give her a list to that side, and then the list becomes cumulative, and piles up. She would not right herself, as she is continually going by the head. If, as your Lordship says, she had remained afloat she would eventually have come back.

20251. If she could have remained afloat she would have righted herself in time?
- Probably, My Lord, as far as I can judge.

20252. (Mr. Rowlatt.) On the same page of this document, page 11, you deal with the construction of the double bottom. You say, "Forward and aft of the machinery space the construction was of the usual type. Where it extended from bilge to bilge it was so divided that there were four separate tanks athwartships." Does that mean that the space between -?
- Between bilge and bilge was divided by longitudinal partitions making four tanks.

20253. "Before and abaft the machinery space it was divided by a watertight division at the centre line except in the foremost and aftermost tanks"?
- Quite right.

20254. Is that something different from the four separate tanks athwartships?
- Yes; before and abaft the machinery space the tank is only carried to the lower part of the turn of the bilge, as is usual in most ships. The tank, owing to the ship coming in towards the end is much narrower, and it is only divided by one division on the centre line to make two tanks, and at the extreme end next the centre division there is only one tank.

20255. That is outside the machinery space?
- That is outside the machinery space.

20256. Inside the machinery space it is divided into four?
- Four tanks athwartships.

20257. That part of the ship is extra strengthened by being hydraulically riveted?
- Yes, it was adopted as the strongest means known to us of securing it.

20258. We have heard something in the evidence about an apparent fracture of the whole ship as she foundered, which is rather why I was going a little minutely into this part of it. Do you believe that happened?
- Not in the least. I have tried to make an approximate calculation, and I feel quite sure it did not happen.

20259. That is why I was asking you - of course I will not ask it more than is thought material - as to the strength of its construction. As I understand, the whole of the ship is, as you explained to us yesterday, a girder?
- Yes.

20260. Is this double bottom a girder too?
- Yes, but a much shallower one than the whole ship.

20261. And to a certain extent is every deck?
- It is a member of the girder.

The Commissioner:
The evidence about this breaking of the ship in two immediately before she founders and the righting of the afterend is unsatisfactory.

Mr. Rowlatt:
Very well, My Lord, then I will not examine in detail upon it.

The Witness:
It might perhaps interest my Lord to know the rough calculation I was able to make as to the probable stress arising when the ship foundered as she got her stern out of the water. I can only do it very roughly, of course. It showed the stress in the ship was probably not greater than she would encounter in a severe Atlantic storm. The ship was made to go through an Atlantic storm, and therefore would be capable of meeting that stress.

20262. Very well. Now I will not ask you about the next part of your proof, which is as to strength generally. I see you say at the bottom of page 11 that "at the forward end the framing and plating was specially strengthened with a view to prevent "panting." What is "panting"?
- When a ship is plunging into a big head sea there is a slight tendency on the part of the sides to go like a concertina, and that is known technically as panting.

20263. As I gather, that is not desirable?
- It is not desirable, and therefore you try to stop it.

The Commissioner:
Where is that word to be found?

The Attorney-General:
It is the second paragraph on "structure."

20264. (Mr. Rowlatt - To the witness.) And you say "and damage by meeting thin harbour ice"?
- In New York, to which these ships run, it is no uncommon occurrence in winter to have to force your way out through ice 3 or 4 inches thick.

20265. It achieves a double object?
- Yes.

20266. Perhaps I ought to put this general question to you. The contact with this iceberg was the contact of a body weighing 50,000 tons moving at the rate of 22 knots an hour?
- Yes.

20267. I gather to resist such a contact as that you could not build any plates strong enough, as plates?
- It depends, of course, on the severity of the contact. This contact seems to have been a particularly light one.

20268. Light?
- Yes, light, because we have heard the evidence that lots of people scarcely felt it.

20269. You mean it did not strike a fair blow?
- If she struck it a fair blow I think we should have heard a great deal more about the severity of it, and probably the ship would have come into harbour if she had struck it a fair blow, instead of going to the bottom.

20270. You think that?
- I am quite sure of it.

20271. (The Commissioner.) I am rather interested about that. Do you mean to say that if this ship had driven on to the iceberg stem on she would have been saved?
- I am quite sure she would, My Lord. I am afraid she would have killed every firemen down in the firemen's quarters, but I feel sure the ship would have come in.

20272. And the passengers would not have been lost?
- The passengers would have come in.

20273. Then do you think it was an error of judgment - I do not by any means say it was a negligent act at all - to starboard the helm?
- It is very difficult to pass judgment on what would go through an Officer's mind, My Lord.

20274. An error of judgment and negligence are two different things altogether. A man may make a mistake and be very far from being negligent?
- Yes.

20275. Do you think that if the helm had not been starboarded there would have been a chance of the ship being saved?
- I believe the ship would have been saved, and I am strengthened in that belief by the case which your Lordship will remember where one large North Atlantic steamer, some 34 years ago, did go stem on into an iceberg and did come into port, and she was going fast?
- I am old enough to remember that case, but I am afraid my memory is not good enough.

Mr. Laing:
The "Arizona" - I remember it.

The Witness:
The "Arizona," my Lord.

20276. (Mr. Rowlatt.) You said it would have killed all the firemen?
- I am afraid she would have crumpled up in stopping herself. The momentum of the ship would have crushed in the bows for 80 or perhaps 100 feet.

20277. You mean the firemen in their quarters?
- Yes, down below. We know two watches were down there.

20278. Do you mean at the boilers?
- Oh, no, they would scarcely have felt the shock.

The Commissioner:
Any person, fireman or anybody else, who happened to be in that 100 feet, would probably never have been seen again?

20279. (Mr. Rowlatt.) The third class passengers are there too, I think, some of them?
- I do not think there are any third class passengers forward of the second bulkhead, and I believe she would have stopped before the second bulkhead was damaged. It is entirely crew there, and almost entirely firemen - firemen, trimmers, and greasers.

20280. Your opinion is that the ship would have suffered that crushing in in the first two compartments, but that the shock would not have shattered or loosened the rivets in any other part of the ship?
- Not sufficiently. As it would take a considerable length, 80 or 100 feet to bring up, it is not a shock, it is a pressure that lasts three or four seconds, five seconds perhaps, and whilst it is a big pressure it is not in the nature of a sharp blow.

20281. (The Commissioner.) It would, I suppose, have shot everybody in the ship out of their berths?
- I very much doubt it, My Lord.

20282. At 22 1/2 knots an hour, and being pulled up quite suddenly?
- Not quite suddenly, My Lord. 100 feet will pull up a motor car going 22 miles an hour without shooting you out of the front.

20283. (Mr. Rowlatt.) What you mean is that the ship would have telescoped herself?
- Yes, up against the iceberg.

20284. And stopped when she telescoped enough?
- Yes, that is what happened in the "Arizona."

20285. Now, the watertight subdivisions - you have a heading in your report as to that?
- Yes.

20286. You say it was arranged that the bulkheads and divisions should be so located that the ship should remain afloat in the event of any two adjoining compartments being flooded." Was that achieved in this ship - that she could float with any two watertight compartments flooded? Have you any little picture of that? Do not go into it in detail.
- I have a plan showing the original calculations which were made.

20287. We do not want any calculations, because we should not understand them?
- Well, I can show the results of them - the effect on the ship of flooding each pair of compartments, My Lord. (A plan was handed to the Commissioner.) It is the original calculation which was made and a copy of the original plan. It was to show the effect on the trim of the ship of flooding each pair of watertight compartments.

20288. (The Commissioner.) Is this a plan for this Enquiry, or made in the course of the construction of the ship?
- The plan was made in the course of the construction of the ship to satisfy ourselves that she would comply with this condition, which was put to use as one of the conditions.

The Commissioner:
I should like Professor Biles to see this.

Mr. Rowlatt:
May we begin at the other end of the plan, My Lord?
- Your Lordship sees this is a series of sections arranged so as to show every possible combination of adjoining compartments.

20289. (The Commissioner.) Were these plans submitted to the Board of Trade?
- No.

20290. (Mr. Rowlatt.) I will ask one question. Have you drawn here a picture of each pair of adjoining compartments being flooded, beginning at the bow, exclusive of the collision bulkhead?
- Exclusive of the forepeak, which has quite a small effect - only a few inches.

20291. Have you put upon this longitudinal section of the ship, where the waterline would be if those two compartments were flooded?
- Yes, and in each case, as you will see, the line comes nearer and nearer to the deck line. It comes closer up, and then begins to get further down again.

20292. That, of course, depends upon intricate calculation?
- More or less intricate calculation. Professor Biles is familiar with it.

20293. It is the fact, as I understand it, that any two adjoining compartments may be flooded and the top of the bulkhead will still be above the water?
- Still be above water. It will be above the waterline by an amount which is about double the amount recommended by the bulkhead Committee in 1891, and also be more above the waterline than in the case of an awning deck ship near 300 feet long, undamaged.

20294. How much?
- The lowest case, I think, was 2 feet 7 inches.

20295. Two and a half to 3 feet was the worst?
- Yes, and only one as bad as that.

20296. Now, suppose two compartments flooded which are not adjoining?
- It is usually a great deal less severe on the ship, the compartments being substantially the same size as they are in this case.

20297. (The Commissioner.) I am afraid I am interrupting your story, but can you tell what plans were submitted to the Board of Trade?
- Offhand I cannot, My Lord.

20298. But you will ascertain for us?
- I can ascertain.

20299. What assumption have you proceeded upon when making these calculations as to the cargo in the ship?
- There are quite a list of deductions. In the first place, it is assumed that 5 percent of the volume of the space flooded will be occupied by the structure of the ship, such as decks, and cabin bulkheads and partitions. That is the first general deduction. It was assumed in making those calculations that the double bottomed tanks were flooded as well as the ship's hold. It was further assumed that in the cargo spaces about one -quarter of the volume of the space would be occupied by water-excluding materials.

20300. About one-fourth?
- About one-fourth.

20301. Can you tell me why you assume about one-fourth? It may be altogether wrong?
- It was from a variety of considerations. We have never fully calculated it, but taking ordinary cargoes that are carried in ships of this type, it was the best estimate that we could make.

20302. At all events, you thought it a fair estimate to make for the purpose of testing the arrangements which you were making?
- Yes, My Lord. I may say I believe it is rather more. It is usually assumed cargo will exclude rather more than that, but taking the very light cargoes - light in character in relation to their bulk - which are carried by these express steamers, it seemed wiser to take one-fourth, to be on the safe side.

20303. Are those the assumptions that you proceeded upon?
- Those are the assumptions. If you go into the bunkers of course you must then assume something else for the coal. In the case of bunkers, it was assumed that about one-half of the space occupied by coal would be available for water coming in; that is that the bunker probably is not quite full. Of course water gets in between the lumps of coal.

20304. The cubic quantity of water would be half the cubic contents of the bunker?
- Quite, My Lord.

20305. What waterline did you start at?
- The intended load waterline of the ship, 34 feet 6 inches moulded draught. We eventually got a waterline not quite so deep as that by a couple of inches about.

20306. (Mr. Rowlatt.) That assumed something in the cargo space, I suppose, to get that waterline?
- Of course she had to be fairly full of cargo and of coal.

20307. And then, when you came to calculate the effect of water coming in, you allowed for that again, one-fourth?
- That is right. There are some spaces to which water could find entry which are neither cargo nor coal spaces, such as stores and mails and baggage room, and in those cases I believe one -sixth was allowed. I am quoting that from memory, I am not quite sure whether that applied to stores or whether stores were taken at one-fourth. I have not a note of that particular point.

20308. Supposing you took this ship quite empty, so that every bit of the watertight compartments could be filled with nothing but water, would she then float if any two adjacent ones were full of water?
- Yes, because, you see, when there is no coal and no water in the ship she is floating with the top of her bulkheads much higher out of the water, and you gain that increased height over the whole length of the ship, and you only lose on the exclusion of the water in the flooded space.

20309. The sort of case that you did not contemplate was if the whole of the rest of the ship was loaded but only the two compartments which happened to be punctured or holed were empty; you did not assume that?
- It is hardly a conceivable case; but even if they were, the ship would probably not be at her loaded draught, and so would have that buoyancy. We took what we judged to be the most severe case.

20310. Now, have you also considered how this gradual sinking was caused and did progress in this ship, having regard to the wounds in the ship's side which have been disclosed by the evidence?
- I have had some calculations made and plans prepared.

20311. Is the result pictorial? We cannot understand calculations.
- No; I will put in the plans. I have copies of them. (The same were handed in.)

20312. Now before we explain these plans, Mr. Wilding, will you just tell us this - you have followed all the evidence that has been given?
- Yes, I have followed it, but this first plan was made as the evidence was being followed and as it came out from day to day.

20313. Now will you just tell us the nature of the wound which you think this ship received?
- I would rather, if I may, put the plans in, and then describe what the eventual nature of the wound was when I have described the plans. On the plan I have handed in to my Lord there are three elevations shown. In the first one, which was the evidence we had (Marked a.) in the earliest stages, No. 1 hold, No. 3 hold, and No. 6 boiler room, Marked with a red cross, was flooded. That was absolutely the first evidence we had.

20314. We have not had, I think, evidence of No. 2?
- No, nor of the forepeak, which was mentioned quite late in the day. As your Lordship will see, the water did not then reach the top of the bulkheads.

20315. (The Commissioner.) The water had not reached the top of the bulkheads?
- That is quite right. The result of that calculation was reported to me, and I then told them at Belfast by wire to flood No. 2 compartment, also the forepeak, and see what happened.

20316. What do you mean by flooded?
- To treat it as flooded for the purposes of the calculation; it is marked b.

20317. That would be Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 spaces?
- Yes, the forepeak, No. 1, No. 2, and No. 3 holds, and No. 6 boiler room. That is marked b, My Lord. You will notice in that that the waterline has now got above the top of the bulkhead.

20318. (Mr. Rowlatt.) Are you speaking of B?
- Yes.

20319. The forepeak is flooded?
- Yes, and 1, 2, and 3 holds and No. 6 boiler room.

20320. (The Commissioner.) As soon as that state of things arrives there is an end of the ship - as soon as you get to that state of things the epitaph of the ship is written?
- And as a further assumption I have also had plan C made in which the forepeak was not flooded; 1, 2, and 3 holds and No. 6 boiler room.

20321. As a matter of curiosity, for my information, how long after the water got above the watertight bulkheads would this ship float. Would she sink instantly?
- Absolutely no, My Lord. Probably for an hour - perhaps a little more; it would depend upon the extent of the damage. Assuming the damage in this particular case, it would take, I should think, an hour to an hour and a quarter, as well as I could estimate.

20322. (The Attorney-General.) Is that assuming the doors closed?
- It assumes the after-door closed, and the door between A and F closed.

20323. (Mr. Rowlatt.) So that the water would only progress aft over the top of the successive bulkheads?
- Yes.

20324. (The Commissioner.) Of course it would not do anything else. It would flow over the top and flow down; wherever it could find a space to flow down into the ship it would flow down?
- Quite right.

20325. (Mr. Rowlatt.) Then the ship would be further down by the head, and it would be able to flow over the next one?
- I have a plan showing that.

The Commissioner:
At all events, according to your view, it would take about an hour?

The Attorney-General:
He has worked it out by a plan, My Lord. (A plan was handed in.)

Mr. Rowlatt:
If your Lordship will allow the witness just to say what this plan means, I think it will save trouble, and we shall get it upon the Notes.

The Witness:
In this plan -

20326. (The Commissioner.) What do you mean by "this" plan?
- The plan I have just handed up to your Lordship. It is marked upon the back as the plan called "Flooding by compartments."

20327. Row E?
- Yes, that was simply for convenience in finding it.

20328. (Mr. Rowlatt.) Will you say what this plan represents?
- I took as the basis of this plan the same as for plans A, B, and C, the best estimate I could make of the waterline at the time of the accident, that is, I knew what draught the "Titanic" sailed from Southampton at; I knew what the average change of draught on the voyage by the "Olympic" was for several voyages.

20329. (The Commissioner.) Do you mean by the consumption of coal?
- I mean by the use of coal and the use of fresh water and stores, My Lord; and also I knew that about two-thirds of the voyage had been completed. I therefore took two-thirds of the normal change in the "Olympic," of the average change, and applied it to the departure draught of the "Titanic," and used the line so reached as a basis to start from. That applies to all the calculations which I have made since the accident. This plan of "flooding by compartments," shows that waterline which I have been referring to which is marked as a black dotted line at the two ends.

Mr. Rowlatt:
Outside the stem, My Lord; the lowest line outside the stem.

The Witness:
The first thing was to flood the forepeak tank, that was the foremost compartment of the ship, which is marked in yellow, and which gave the yellow waterline just above the black dot.

20330. That shows the amount the ship was sunk by the head by filling the forepeak?
- Quite right.

20331. That is very little indeed?
- Yes. Of course the water is restrained from rising in the forepeak by the watertight tank; it cannot go any higher than the top of the tank. I then flooded No. 1 hold, which is tinted green, and I got the green waterline. That is No. 1 hold plus the forepeak. I then, in addition to having the forepeak flooded and No. 1 hold flooded, flooded No. 2 hold, which is marked brown, and I got the brown waterline. Then, having flooded the forepeak and No. 1 and No. 2 holds, I also flooded No. 3 hold, which I then wanted to indicate by the red space which is represented by the red line.

20332. (The Commissioner.) Would this swamp (I daresay it is not the right expression.) flood the tunnel?
- Yes, between the green line and the brown line; the water comes over the top of the tunnel step, and would flood the tunnel.

20333. That is the narrow tunnel on the starboard side?
- No, the firemen's passage, My Lord, in the centre line in the bottom.

20334. You say that the flooding of No. 2 hold would include the firemen's passage?
- Yes. When No. 2 was flooded it would flood the firemen's passage, because, as your Lordship will see, the waterline has then got above the step in the bulkhead and can go down the stair. Of course, as you will see, the water is still at that time below the level of the top of the bulkheads which run to the E deck, the black continuous sheered line. I then flooded No. 6 boiler room, in addition to the others, of course, which is shown in the blue tint, and gave the blue waterline. Your Lordship will now see that the water had got up above the top of A bulkhead, and would get down into the rest of the forepeak. Your Lordship will notice that that flooding corresponds to B, shown on the first blueprint that I handed up. That condition corresponds to B on the first blueprint which I handed up.

20335. And that is the end of the ship; that is the foundering of the ship?
- It means the eventual foundering of the ship.

Mr. Rowlatt:
Now the remaining colours, My Lord, show how she did founder.

20336. (The Commissioner.) In order to get it clear as we go along, does this seem to indicate or does this lead you to the conclusion that this ship was holed as far aft as No. 5 bunker?
- No. 6 boiler room I have got to at present, to the blue line.

20337. And is it not the fact that the watertight bulkhead between No. 6 boiler room and No. 5 boiler room was injured?
- Yes, we have it in Barrett's evidence.

20338. Yes, so that the holing of this ship extended from the peak to the fifth boiler room?
- To No. 5 boiler section, My Lord.

20339. I am reminded that Barrett's evidence pointed to a hole in the skin of the ship forward of the division between 5 and 6 boiler rooms, and also aft?
- Yes, in the forward bunker of No. 5.

Mr. Rowlatt:
If I may remind your Lordship, it was quite clear that there was a great hole in No. 6, and there was some water coming in, as I think he said, in the bunker in No. 5.

The Commissioner:
Yes. It is suggested to me that, notwithstanding that state of things, the bulkhead between 5 and 6 may not have been injured at all.

The Witness:
Well, My Lord, there is this wound. You could not rupture the shell, which is strongly connected to the bulkhead, without in some way damaging the bulkhead itself - I mean if you cut the skin, if you break the skin at the bulkhead, you must in some measure, though perhaps only in a small measure, damage the bulkhead itself. Now the next two conditions, My Lord, which I had to make to facilitate the possible calculations of assumption that the bulkheads were carried right up as high as was necessary -

20340. That seems to me to be the next point to consider?
- Yes.

Mr. Rowlatt:
I think you are at cross purposes, My Lord, with the witness, if I may say so. The witness is about to explain to you these other two colours. He is not upon the question of clearing up the matter with regard to the bulkheads. He is only explaining that he cannot keep the flooding even when the ship has got to this condition; he cannot keep the flooding to No. 5 and calculate No. 5 separately from No. 4, because before No. 5 is quite full No. 4 will be also partially full, and therefore this is to some extent artificial; this grey colouring which shows the black line is to some extent artificial, because he has treated it as if it was only No. 5 and not also in the hatched red part of No. 4.

The Witness:
Yes, that is what I wanted to say. It was done to make the calculation a practicable one. I then flooded No. 5 boiler room in identically the same way as I had previously flooded No. 6, adding its flooding effect to the forward spaces, and I got the black line, which, as you will notice, puts the forecastle entirely under water, and also the forward end of forward deck, B deck, which is the top deck shown on these elevations. That means that the waterline is something like that (Describing with a pointer on the model.)

Mr. Rowlatt:
He is showing your Lordship on the model approximately how it would be when No. 5 was also flooded.

The Witness:
That is right; about where we got the long tube, My Lord.

20341. Then if it went into No. 4 also, is that shown to be red hatched?
- Yes. In order to understand effect of the red hatching and to see what it really means, it is best to tilt the plan and put it like this, so that the red line is approximately parallel to the forecastle head, and it shows that the stern is out of the water as far about as the base of the mainmast, or a little further forward.

20342. (The Commissioner.) I will put it quite shortly to you, Mr. Wilding - is it possible to conceive a construction of bulkheads in the forward part of this ship which would prevent the sinking of this vessel?
- Not the eventual sinking, My Lord, the reason being that we had evidence that as far aft as No. 4 boiler room the water was found rising above the stokehold plates, and drove the firemen out of it, in Dillon's evidence.

20343. I had forgotten that. I thought the evidence pointed to water coming in as far aft as No. 5?
- No, My Lord; you will find it in Dillon's evidence.

Mr. Rowlatt:
I think No. 5 is the furthest place aft where we have any evidence of a wound in the side of the ship, but water from some source not quite explained was rising in No. 4 also.

20343a. (The Commissioner.) If the water was rising in No. 4 it must, if the watertight bulkhead between 4 and 5 was holding, have been through some external means?
- Yes.

Mr. Rowlatt:
Only we have not direct evidence of it.

The Commissioner:
But if the evidence is to be believed that water was rising in No. 4, it follows that No. 4 was externally injured, does it not?

Mr. Rowlatt:
Yes, My Lord.

20344. (The Attorney-General.) I do not know that. (To the witness.) Does it follow?
- It follows my Lord, because we know from the evidence that they were doing their best to pump out No. 4. If you remember, we have had evidence that they took pipes along.

The Commissioner:
Wait a moment. Could you, Mr. Laing, read to me the evidence with regards to the water coming into No. 4?

Mr. Laing:
Yes, My Lord, I have got the references to it, and it begins at page 99.

The Commissioner:
Well, just read it to me.

Mr. Laing:
I will.

The Attorney-General:
Before you read it let me just remind your Lordship that he is the man who went right aft when the doors were closed. I am giving you a description which will recall it. Then he comes forward to No. 4, and between No. 4 and 5 stops, and then my learned friend is going to read what happens after.

The Commissioner:
Who is this man?

Mr. Laing:
Dillon, My Lord, a trimmer. "(Q.) Did you see any water before you went up in any of the boiler rooms or the engine room? - (A.) Yes, there was water coming in forward. (Q.) The furthest point forward you reached was No. 4 boiler section? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) Was it coming in there? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) Where was it coming in? - (A.) Coming from underneath. (Q.) From underneath the floor? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) And from what part of the floor, the forward part or the afterpart? - (A.) The forward part. (Q.) Did it come in large quantities, or only in small quantities? - (A.) Small quantities. (Q.) Was there any depth of water standing on the floor? - (A.) No. (Q.) Do you mean the floor was just damp? - (A.) That is all. (Q.) And it seemed to be coming through the floor? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) Did you see any coming through the side of the ship at all? - (A.) I never noticed."

The Commissioner:
That seems to me to be very unsatisfactory evidence.

Mr. Laing:
My Lord, there is another Witness, Cavell, at page 107. My Lord, Cavell, who was a trimmer, says this.

The Commissioner:
What was the other man?

Mr. Laing:
He was a trimmer.

The Commissioner:
Then this is the evidence of two trimmers?

Mr. Laing:
Yes, My Lord. "(Q.) What happened then," he is being asked, "(A.) The water started coming up over her stokehold plates. (Q.) In No. 4? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) Did that happen gradually, or did it happen suddenly? - (A.) It came gradually. (Q.) The water - you moved your hand - you raised it; did it seem to come up from below? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) As far as you saw in No. 4, did any water come in from the side of the ship? - (A.) Not so far as I saw. (Q.) When the water came up through the plates, what was done then? - (A.) We stopped as long as we could. (Q.) That is right? - (A.) And then I thought to myself it was time I went for the escape ladder. (Q.) They were still drawing the fires, these men were they? - (A.) Yes. (Q.) How high did the water get above the plates they were standing on? How much water were they standing in before they left? - (A.) About a foot."

The Commissioner:
Oh! Well, if that evidence merely relates to No. 4, as he says it does, it shows that water was coming in in considerable quantities.

Mr. Laing:
Yes, My Lord, I think that is all the evidence that there is.

The Commissioner:
Very well, that is sufficient.

20345. (Mr. Rowlatt.) Now, May I ask Mr. Wilding a question or two about that? (To the witness.) With regard to the evidence of the wound to the side of the ship, which you remember Barrett said was above the foot plate, apparently it terminated in No. 5?
- It terminated in the bunker at the forward end of No. 5.

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