Boiler Room Damage & Flooding Testimony


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Cal Haines

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Introduction

This is a spin-off of the thread in the Collision / Sinking Theories Topic message titled Abandoning Ship, which started out as sort of a damage control discussion, but has morphed into a discussion of damage and flooding (my fault). Since my post was getting pretty big, I pulled out the inquiry testimony of Leading Firemen Frederick Barrett and George Hendrickson, and Fireman George Beauchamp for posing here. I did not try to summarize or excerpt the entire testimony of the men, rather I concentrated on testimony that centers on the damage to the ship, the degree of flooding, and what each did in the boiler rooms.

Each section begins with a summary of the testimony, followed by excerpts from the Inquiry text. I have removed asides and redundant questions in an effort to make the testimony a quicker read.

The complete excerpt of Barrett's testimony is a bit much to post (even by my standards), so I have excerpted the key segments here. I can post the rest if there is interest. Enjoy!

Cal


Leading Fireman Frederick William Barrett

SUMMARY

Moments before the collision Barrett was talking with Second Engineer John Hesketh near the passage to the aft door of BR#6. The boiler-room telegraph went to STOP, causing Barrett and Hesketh to yell for the stokers to "shut the dampers". Before the dampers could all be closed there was a crash and water flooded in from the starboard side of the ship, about two feet above the floor plates. Barrett and Hesketh went aft, through the 18 foot-long passage and watertight door, entering BR#5 just as the door was closing.

Barrett looked in the starboard, foreward coal bunker of BR#5 and saw a stream of water, comparable to that of a firehose, coming in from the ship's side. He closed the bunker door and reported what he had seen to engineer in charge of the boiler rooms, Mr. Shepherd.

Hesketh ordered, "All hands, stand by your stations". Barrett went back to #6 with Shepherd and found it abandoned, with eight feet of water above the plates. Barrett and Shepherd then returned to BR#5 to find engineers Wilson and Harvey there (Hesketh had apparently departed). Next, the engine room ordered the stokers sent up and Barrett was kept behind by Harvey to run errands, as both of the watertight doors were closed. After the other stokers were sent up, the lights went out in the boiler room. Barrett was sent up to E-deck, found the lights working there and sent two stokers to the engine room for portable lamps, which Barrett then took back to the boiler room. About the time the lamps arrived the lights came back on in the boiler room. Barrett then discovered that the water level in the boilers was down and notified one of the engineers. Harvey ordered Barrett to draw the fires and Barrett went up to E-deck and rounded up 15 to 20 firemen--each man then worked to draw the fires from two or so of the 30 furnaces.

The stokers were then sent back up. Barrett remained below with engineers Harvey and Shepherd. On Harvey's orders, Barrett removed a manhole cover from the starboard side floor plates. The boiler room was full of steam and Shepherd did not see the open hole, falling in and breaking his leg. Harvey and Barrett carried Shepherd to the pump room. About 15 minutes after the stokers were released, Barrett saw a rush of water come though the passage way between the boilers, filling the gap and flooding the boiler room. Harvey told Barrett to go, and he climbed to E-deck where he saw water on deck, forward.

Barrett proceeded to the Promenade deck, where he was drafted to crew boat #13, one of the last boats to leave the ship. Titanic's forecastle was still above the water as Barrett's boat pulled away.

British Inquiry testimony (excepted):

Quote:

1916. (Solicitor-General) At the time the accident happened it (the watertight door) was open. You and Mr. Hesketh got through it just in time and it shut down behind you? - (Barrett) Yes.
1917. Then when you got into the next section, No. 5, did you find water there? I went through this bunker here - it is a coal bunker - and then the water was rushing in.
1918. You say you went through the coal bunker, which is immediately abaft of the watertight door which you had passed through? - Yes.
1919. And did you find water coming in in that bunker? - Yes, pouring in the bunker.
1920. Was it coming in rapidly? - Yes.
...
1926. Then what did you do when you got into No. 5? - Mr. Hesketh shouted out "all hands stand by your stations." That is for the men to stand by the fires. My station was in the next boiler room, and Mr. Shepherd and I went up an escape and down to the boiler room, but we could not get in. There were 8 feet of water in it.
...
1935. When you came into No. 6 what water did you find in it then? - Eight feet above the plates.)
1936. That is a rise of six feet since you left it? - Yes.
1937. (Commissioner) How long? - It was not a quarter of an hour, just on ten minutes.
1938. (Solicitor-General) You told us you got as quickly as you could into No. 5? - Yes.
1939. And when this order was given did you obey it as quickly as you could? - Yes, we obeyed it as quickly as we could.
1940. Now just think. Was there much length of time after you got into No. 5 and before Mr. Hesketh gave that order? - I should say about ten minutes.
...
1943. ...When you returned or tried to return to No. 6 coming down that emergency ladder did you see anything of your mates in No. 6? - No.
1944. (Commissioner) What had become of them? - I cannot tell you, my Lord.
...
1952. (Solicitor-General) When you found there were eight feet of water there, what did you do then? - We came back to No. 5.
1953. Again using these emergency ladders? - Yes.
...
1956. (Solicitor-General) Did Mr. Shepherd come back with you to No. 5? - Yes.
1957. And when you got back to No. 5, you and Mr. Shepherd, who else did you find there? - Mr. Harvey and Mr. Wilson.
...
1961. And what were they doing? - Attending to the pumps.
...
1967. Were the pumps working in No. 5? - I could not tell you.
...
1970. ... We have come back to No. 5, and you say they were attending to the pumps there. What was the next thing that happened? - They rang through from the engine room to send all the stokers up and me to remain there.
...
1979. Do you know what he wanted you to remain for? - In case he wanted anything, I could go and fetch it, because you have to travel up ladders. You cannot go through the watertight doors.
1980. That is what I wanted to know. Was the watertight door in the bulkhead behind you, the one at the afterend of No. 5 shut? - Yes.
...
1982. Then you were given an order by Mr. Harvey to remain there, and I suppose you did. What did the other hands there do? - I sent them up.
1983. They all went up? - Yes.
1984. Then you and Mr. Harvey were left alone in No. 5? - And Mr. Wilson and Mr. Shepherd.
1985. The three engineers and you. Was it still clear of water? - Yes.
1986. So the bulkhead in front of No. 5 was holding the water back? - Yes.
1987. Now what happened after that? - The lights went out.
...
1989. And when the lights went out what did you do? - Mr. Harvey sent me up for some lamps.
1990. Did you go? - I went to the top of the escape and sent two firemen. They fetched 12 to 15 back.
...
1995. You sent two firemen for lamps? - Yes.
...
1998. Did they get lamps? - Yes.
1999. And bring them back to you? - Yes.
2000. Did you take them down to Number 5? - Yes.
...
2003. ... You went up as far as the alleyway, and the alleyway is lighted by electric light? - Yes.
2004. Was the light burning or was it out there too? - It was burning there.
2005. It was only in No. 5 it had gone out as far as you know? - Yes.
2006. Then the lamps are got and you take them down to No. 5, and how soon did the electric light come back? - It just came back as we got the lamps.
2007. When you got back to number 5 was it still clear of water, or not? - Still clear of water.
2008. What was the condition of the boilers at this time? - I looked at the water. There was no water in the boilers.
...
2009. You looked at the water gauge? - Yes.
2010. And there was no water in the boilers? - No.
2011. Then it had been let out, had it? - With the ship blowing off it had blown it out.
2012. Then after you had looked at the boilers and found they had no water in them what was the next order you got from Mr. Harvey? - To fetch some men down to keep the fires pulled.
2013. Would that be in all the sections? - No; only in No. 5 section.
2014. How many men were wanted for that? - I got between 15 and 20 down. There were 30 furnaces to pull.
...
2018. And did they draw the fires? - Yes.
2019. How long do you think it would take them to draw the fires? - It would take them 20 minutes.
2020. And after they had drawn the fires what happened to them? - I sent them up again.

British Inquiry, Day 3, Barrett

US Inquiry
(Barrett) ...We got through before the doors broke, the doors dropped instantly automatically from the bridge. I went back to No. 6 fireroom and there was 8 feet of water in there. I went to No. 5 fireroom when the lights went out. I was sent to find lamps, as the lights were out, and when we got the lamps we looked at the boilers and there was no water in them. I ran to the engineer and he told me to get some firemen down to draw the fires. I got 15 men down below.

US Inquiry, Day 18, Barrett




Leading Fireman Charles George Hendrickson

SUMMARY

Leading Fireman Hendrickson was off duty when the collision occurred. He was awakened by a mate and went topside where he saw ice on the deck. He noticed that the ship was stopped and looked aft to see an iceberg astern. Returning below he saw water rushing into the passage at the base of the spiral stairs, coming in from the starboard side. Hendrickson went to report and met Mr. Hesketh along the working passage on E-deck. Hesketh told him to get lamps and some men and lay below. Hendrickson got five lamps (all that were ready) and returned to the boiler rooms, leaving men behind to fetch more lamps. He first tried to go into BR#6, where he was normally assigned, but found it flooded and went instead to #5, when he arrived the lights were still out. Mr. Shepherd told him to check the water levels in the boilers. Hendrickson apparently had to return to E-deck to light the lamps, when he returned to the boiler-room, Shepherd told him to start drawing fires. When Hendrickson started to do so himself, Mr. Harvey told him to go get some men to assist, which he did.

Hendrickson had been in charge of the crew that finished clearing the coal out of the bunker and reported that the bulkhead was damaged. He was one of seven crewmen who escaped aboard boat #1, with the Duff-Gordon's.

Quote:

4842. Were you awakened by the shock? - No.

4844. Which side of the ship was your bunk on? - The port side.
4845. … who was it woke you up? - T. Ford.
4846. He was drowned, was he not? - Yes.
4847. … did you go on deck? - Yes.
4848. Did you see the iceberg? - Yes.
4849. Where was it? - Just abaft the engine room when I got on deck. … first I saw a lot of ice on the deck, and I looked out and saw an iceberg astern just abaft the engine room.
4850. You came up very quick? - No, I walked up behind the others who were walking up.
4851. Had the ship nearly stopped then? - She was stopped.

4853. And you returned below? - Yes.
4854. You were going to turn in? - I was going to turn in and the same man, Ford, came back and said there was water coming in down below, that is down the spiral staircase.

4859. You looked down here and saw it? - Yes, I saw the water rushing in here. (Pointing on the plan.) I saw it running out of the fore part of the pipe tunnel right down at the bottom of the stairs. …
… That is the tunnel we go through from our quarters to go into the stokehold.


4863. (Mr. Rowlatt.) The spiral staircase led down to the bottom of the ship, and from there the fireman's passage and pipe tunnel led along to No. 6 section? - No. 6 section, No. 11 stokehold.
4864. Now where you saw the water coming - you saw it coming from aft, forward into the bottom of the spiral staircase? - From the starboard side.

4865. Are there two staircases? - … There are two staircases, one up and one down …
4866. You were looking down on the port side of the staircase? - Yes, and saw the water rushing in from the starboard side at the bottom.

4870. The water which you saw rushing down there could not have come from forward, could it, because there is a bulkhead across? - It came from the ship's side I am telling you, the starboard side.
4871. You could not see where it was coming in, but you saw it coming from the starboard side? - I saw it coming from the ship's side.

4890. … You said you saw the water coming from the ship's side; do you mean that. You saw it coming through the ship's side? - No, coming from the ship's side.
4891. That was merely the direction from which you saw it travelling? - Yes.
4893. You could not tell whether the water was coming through the fore and aft bulkhead at the bottom of the staircase, could you? - No, I could only see the direction it came from.
4894. Was it coming hard? - Yes, it was more than rushing in; it was falling in.
4895. Did it strike you it was coming in at a point which was not at the bottom of the bulkhead? - Well, you could not exactly tell that. There was a lot of water there and from the way it was rushing in you could not exactly tell how it was coming.
4896. Did you go and report that? - Yes.
4897. To whom? - The second engineer.
4898. Do you know what his name was? - I met Mr. Hesketh first, the second engineer, and reported to him.
4899. Did he give you any instructions? - He told me to get some lamps after that and get some men with me, and get some lamps as we come along and take them down below.
4900. Where did you find Mr. Hesketh? - In the working alleyway on the port side of the ship.
4901. And where did you go and get the lamps? - In the engine room.
4902. You went right along the alleyway to the engine room? - I went right through.
4903. When you got the lamps did you go back with them? - I got all the lamps I could get that were ready. I got five, and left four or five men there to get more if they could. Then I came back by the engine room, went along and down the escape to go to No. 6 section. When I got down there I found I could not get any further, the water was up too high; so I came back by the escape again and went to No. 5 section.
4904. Did you go down No. 5? - Yes.
4905. Did you find Mr. Hesketh there? - No. When I got down there I met Mr. Shepherd; he said to me, "You have got the lamps, have not you?" and I said, "Yes, Sir." He said. "That is right, light them, and put them up by the water-gauges of the boilers." So I lit them up and took them up and came down below again, and Mr. Shepherd said to me, "Start drawing fires," and I said, "Yes." I went to pull the fires out when Mr. Harvey came and asked me if I would get some men down.
4906. Mr. Shepherd was an engineer? - Yes.
4907. He told you to draw the fires, and you went to get somebody to help you? - I was going to get the rake to start pulling some of the fires out when Mr. Harvey came to me.
4908. He is an engineer? - He is another Second Assistant; they were both Second Assistants. He asked me to get some men down to get the fires out. I went up top and saw a few and asked them if they would come down, and some went down.
4909. Did you get some more men? - Yes.
4910. You went forward to your quarters again? - Yes, they were the men belonging to the watch, the 8 to 12 watch.
4911. The men whose watch it was below? - Yes.

British Inquiry, Day 5, Hendrickson




Fireman George William Beauchamp

Fireman Beauchamp was working in the aft stokehold of BR#6 when the collision occurred. He claims to have remained behind after Barrett and Hesketh fled, helping draw the fires in BR#6, yet that claim is absolutely at odds with the testimony of Barrett and Hendrickson. One possible explanation for the conflict is that Beauchamp actually helped draw the fires in #5, not #6--his statement that the only water was "coming through the bunker door and over the plates" is the giveaway.

Quote:

...
656. (Attorney-General) Were you down below in the stokehold? - (Beauchamp) Yes.
657. Which stokehold was it? - No. 10.
658. Can you see the plan from where you are? - The second one from the forward end.
...
661a. (Mr. Asquith) Did you notice the shock when the ship struck? - Yes, Sir, I noticed the shock.
662. Was it a severe shock? - Just like thunder, the roar of thunder.
663. And immediately after the shock was any order given? - Yes.
664. What order? - To stand by, to stop. - The telegraph went "Stop."
...
665. Did the engineer in your section give you any order? - Yes; the engineer and the leading stoker shouted together - they said, "Shut the dampers."
...
667. Was anything done to the watertight doors after that time? - Yes, immediately the telegraph rang "off" and the order was given to shut up everything the watertight doors dropped.
...
668a. (The Commissioner.) How soon do you suppose after the order to "Stop" came from the bridge did the watertight doors close? - In less than five minutes.
...
668e. (Mr. Raymond Asquith.) After the watertight doors were closed, was any order given to you with regard to the fires? - Yes, I could not say when - it was a few minutes afterwards; the order was given to draw fires.
669. A few minutes after what? - After the order was given to shut up, an order was given to draw fires. I could not say how many minutes, but the order was given to draw fires.
670. And did you obey that order? - Yes.
671. Did you see any water? - Water was coming in on the plates when we were drawing the fires.
672. What do you mean by "the plates"? - The plates of the stokehold where you stand.
...
673. What happened then? - The water was just coming above the plates then.
673a. (Mr. Raymond Asquith.) You mean it was coming through the floor? - Yes, coming through the bunker door and over the plates.
674. Through the bunker door? - Yes, coming through the bunker like.
675. When you had drawn the fires what did you do next? - Waited till everything was shut down and an order was given. Someone shouted "that will do," when everything was safe, when everything was shut down.
676. What did you do? - When the order was given someone shouted "that will do," and so I went to the escape ladder.
...
678. Can you say how long it took to draw the fires? - I could not say how long it took, just the usual time; I could not say for certain.
...
680. Can you say whether it took a few minutes or half-an-hour? - It took about a quarter of an hour, I suppose.
681. Did you notice any more water coming through during that quarter of an hour? - When the order was given and everything was shut up, someone shouted "that will do," and I went to the ladder then, the escape ladder.
682. But I asked you did you notice any more water coming through as time went on; did it come through in greater quantities? - I was going up the ladder.
683. Your answer is you do not know - is that what you mean? - I do not know.
...
754. ... You were a quarter of an hour drawing the fires and you were some time down in the stokehold after you got the order to stop. You were down there, as I understand, about half-an-hour after the order to stop came? - No, not so long as that.
755. Say 20 minutes, and then it took you 20 minutes to lower the boat? - It took us about that or less than that.
756. That would be about three quarters of an hour; and do you tell me the ship sank in half-an-hour after your boat got free? - From the time of the impact when the ship struck, someone in our boat had a watch; it was just about 2 hours and 10 minutes.
...
887. Could you point out to us what stokehold you were in? - Yes.
...
(The Witness indicated the position on the plan.)
888. (The Commissioner.) That is No. 10, is it? - Yes; No. 6 boiler, No. 10 stokehold.
889. (Sir Robert Finlay.) Was the stokehold fore or aft of the boiler? - Aft.


British Inquiry, Day 3, Beauchamp



 

Erik Wood

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Aug 24, 2000
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Cal,

Very well written. But because of my old age you will have to remind me what it is exactly that we disagree on so that I may more properly respond in a organized manner. We also have to remeber that the testimony although our primary source of eye witness accounts is errored in several ways and pure physics has shown us that. Especially the ship breaking in two and things of that nature.

If you could kindly remind me of what it is that you would like me to respond to I would be more then happy to do so.

Erik
 

Cal Haines

Member
Nov 20, 2000
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Tucson, AZ USA
Hi Erik,

Thanks for the kind words.

I guess I wasn't clear on my intentions here. I put this stuff up as backup to my latest addition to your discussion "Abandoning Ship". Here is a link to where we left off:


I think our major points of discussion are:
1) Did the forward watertight bulkhead in #5 collapse? If so, what did it mean? If not, what happened?​
2) What was going on in boiler room #6? Was the flooding ever under control? If not, Titanic was doomed. If so, she might have lived until help could arrive.​
Warm Regards,

Cal
 

Erik Wood

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Gottcha,

I just added some stuff in the Abandon Ship file so check there. I may post somemore here a little later.

Erik
 

Erik Wood

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From what I have so far read. The ship was lost after Boiler Room Six was flooding but the sinking itself could have been delayed if Boiler Room Five had not been lost.

Erik
 
Oct 28, 2000
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Hey Rivet Counters -- Does anyone have any information about the boiler feed water being contaminated with salt after the iceberg accident?

-- David G. Brown
 

Erik Wood

Member
Aug 24, 2000
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To my knowledge ALL water before it went into the boiler had to be purified or salt free. Now that is in the steam turbine plants that I have dealt with and my not apply. Just some ramblings.

Erik
 
Dec 31, 2000
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Dear Cal,
Just adding to the discussion:

How are we going to prove/disprove the watertight bulkhead in #5 collasped or not? That would be a rather rough one unless you could get physical proof wouldn't it? We know that human account is not always accurate unless more than one story's facts matches that of another.

I don't think the flooding was ever UNDER control in Boiler Room # 6, because I believe, that if the ship could have been floated until help arrived, Titanic's crew would have risked life and limb to do so to save the many lives that were lost.

Good questions, with very hard to find and prove answers. I really enjoy this topic Cal. Thank you for opening it up.

Beverly
 
Jul 9, 2000
58,671
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Easley South Carolina
Short of sending an ROV into the wreck (A dicey and potentailly very expensive proposition) I don't see how it could be proven with absolute indisputable certainty.

As ruggedly as the watertight bulkheads were built, the notion of a collapse of the bulkhed itself is decidedly unlikely.(With thanks to Cal Haines for giving the details of the construction in the Abandon Ship Thread) However, overflow from one compartment into the next and down into the bunkers and the boiler room comes out as much more plausible.

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 

Cal Haines

Member
Nov 20, 2000
308
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Tucson, AZ USA
David wrote:
Does anyone have any information about the boiler feed water being contaminated with salt after the iceberg accident?

Erik wrote:
To my knowledge ALL water before it went into the boiler had to be purified or salt free. Now that is in the steam turbine plants that I have dealt with and my not apply

Scotch Marine boilers, such as those used on Titanic could tolerate salt water in a pinch. I can't lay my hands on it right now, but I have at least one marine engineering text that discusses this. It wasn't a good idea for the boiler, long term, plus you loose a lot of heat blowing off the brine that accumulates in the boiler. I don't think you would dare to try it with water tube boilers, since they had a much lower water volumes and were more sensitive to contamination--if salt were to build up on the water tubes it would lead to uneven heating and eventual failure of the boiler, usually killing everyone in the fireroom.

I'm not aware of anything that would suggest that they had feedwater problems. David, have you come across something to that effect, or are you just nerd-baiting again?
happy.gif


Beverly wrote:

How are we going to prove/disprove the watertight bulkhead in #5 collapsed or not? That would be a rather rough one unless you could get physical proof wouldn't it? We know that human account is not always accurate unless more than one story's facts matches that of another.

Hi Beverly,

Thanks for joining in the fun!

Actually, I can't come up with a satisfactory explanation of how, not just one, but a system of three interconnected bulkheads would just collapse without warning! Other than what appears to be rather minor damage on the starboard end of the center (watertight) bulkhead there should be no reason for it to fail. I'm willing to give the engineers at Harland & Wolff credit for being able to design a bulkhead that could stand the pressure.

The British Inquiry concluded that one of the bunker doors failed. This certainly makes the most sense from an engineering standpoint. I'm not sure where this idea that "and then the bulkhead failed" came from. I know Walter Lord had it in his first book (I'm not suggesting that Walter is responsible for it). To me, it seems like a bit of tabloid journalism. It's a lot <FONT COLOR="ff0000">sexier to have a massive structural collapse than to have a door pop open and dump a relatively small amount of water in to BR#5. (Morgan Ford shared the results of his analysis with me: after correcting for the volumes of the boilers, he has a maximum depth of 7 feet of water after the failure).

As to proof, if and when a submersible or some sort of scope can be sent into BR#5, we can see for ourselves. (Michael is ahead of me here.) Perhaps if we can get RMSTI to put off artifact collection and do a little archeology, we can get some answers. I predict that the watertight bulkhead and the bunker bulkheads will be found intact. I suppose we should start a pool...
happy.gif


Until we do get a look, and settle this once and for all, the best we can do is apply common sense and scientific analysis. It is utterly fantastic, at least as far as I am concerned, to suggest that all three bulkhead carried away at once. Even if there were sufficient force to push that much structure aside, what cuts it loose from its supports? All three bulkheads are securely fastened to the hull and the tank-top. The hull has keelson beams that provide additional longitudinal support. There are longitudinal beams above the boilers that support the bulkheads at the tops, the decks provide even more support and the watertight bulkhead is fastened to the structure of the double bottom. If the bulkheads were carried away, they would take substantial chunks of their surroundings with them, doubtless creating huge holes in the hull and/or tank top and demolishing the surrounding decks. In short, I think its far more likely that the side of the ship caved in than it is for the bulkheads to give way.

If only one bulkhead failed in some fashion, there are two others to take up the load. And depending on how you couch the problem, the other two bulkheads would have been sitting there with no load on them until the load bearing bulkhead failed. All the bending that the hull exhibits after its collision with the ocean bottom is proof that the metal does not just split, even when impulsively loaded. (The brittle steel theory has been largely debunked, see Dr. Foecke's Titanic Metallurgy page).

Then there is the massive dam formed by 200-odd tons of coal sitting in the aft bunkers of BR#6--it would take a huge amount of force to move that aside, even if all the bulkheads did was help it keep its form (i.e., keep it standing in a column rather than collapsing into a mound).

That leaves us with two rational possibilities: 1) the watertight door between boiler rooms 5 & 6 failed; and, 2) the forward bunker bulkhead in BR#5 failed. The watertight door was designed to hold back exactly the forces exerted by the flooding in BR#6 and the design had proved itself in the Olympic vs. HMS Hawke collision (photo of damage to Olympic. So unless they had some serious flaws in the material of the door or the bolts that held it in place, scratch theory 1.

By process of elimination we are down to a failure of the aft bulkhead of the forward bunker in BR#5. The bunker doors were never intended to hold back a 30 foot column of water. The bulkheads were designed to hold back a nine-foot deep, 30 foot tall column of coal, which is more dense than water. As the British Inquiry concluded, the bunker door is the weak link and in all probability the source of the rush of water in the passage between the boilers that Barrett reported. Anyone who supports the idea that the bunker bulkhead failed before one of the doors has the burden of demonstrating how the stronger link can fail before the weaker.

Then there is the myth of the fire damage to contend with: Over the years it has been suggested that the bunker fire damaged the integrity of the bulkheads and contributed to the failure of the bulkheads. It is true that the metal of at least one of the bulkhead was warped (both Barrett and Hendrickson report that fact). It is not true that the metal had ever been seen glowing red (see my discussion Bunker Fire...). Even if it had, analysis by Dr. Feocke has concluded that there would not have been sufficient heat to change the properties of the metal. Again, I think the reason this myth persists is that its a lot sexier than the alternatives.

I don't think the flooding was ever UNDER control in Boiler Room # 6, because I believe, that if the ship could have been floated until help arrived, Titanic's crew would have risked life and limb to do so to save the many lives that were lost

I agree 100%, and both Barrett and Hendrickson provide support. The only contrary information is the testimony of Beachamp (above) and what can be read into statements made by Bell to Ismay:

Quote:
(Ismay) I then went down below, I think it was, where I met Mr. Bell, the chief engineer, who was in the main companionway. I asked if he thought the ship was seriously damaged, and he said he thought she was, but was quite satisfied the pumps would keep her afloat. (emphasis added)​
American Inquiry, Day 1, Ismay​
(Senator Smith) Did the chief engineer of the Titanic state to you the extent of the damage? - (Ismay) He said that he thought the damage was serious; that he hoped the pumps would be able to control the water. (emphasis added)​
How long was that after the impact? - I should think it would be perhaps a half an hour afterwards; 35 or 40 minutes.
American Inquiry, Day 11, Ismay​
(Senator Newlands) You say that one of the officers said he thought you could keep the ship afloat by the use of the pumps? The idea was that these pumps would keep these compartments, or some of them, relieved of water? - (Ismay) That they would keep the water in check.
...The pumps were used, were they not? - So far as I know. They were put on at once, I think.
Did any officers of the ship tell you that they were being used? - No; but Mr. Bell told me they hoped they could keep the water in check with the pumps. (emphasis added)​
American Inquiry, Day 11, Ismay​
18515. (Attorney-General) Did you meet Mr. Bell, the Chief Engineer? - (Ismay) I met the Chief Engineer at the top of the staircase.
18516. Did you have some conversation with him - will you tell us what it was? - I asked him whether he thought the ship was seriously damaged, and he said he thought she was, but, as far as I remember, he thought the pumps would control the water.
18517. This is what you said in America. Is this right? You were asked by Senator Smith: "Did the Chief Engineer of the 'Titanic' state to you the extent of the damage? - (A.) He said he thought the damage was serious, but that he hoped the pumps would be able to control the water"? - I do not know whether he said "he hoped" or "he thought"; it is to the best of my recollection. I cannot remember every word he said. (emphasis added)​
18518. I think in an earlier passage there is a statement made somewhat to that effect, that he thought the pumps would be able to control the water, but I am reading now from your own words given in answer: "He hoped the pumps would be able to control the water." What did you do then? - I think I went back to my room for a short time, but I am not absolutely certain.
British Inquiry, Day 16, Ismay​
I hope that answers the question to your satisfaction. If not, fire away and I will try again. If anyone is ready to take up the other side of the debate, please don't be shy.

Warm Regards,

Cal
 
Oct 28, 2000
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Cal and all-- no nerd baiting, but it is a "loaded" question. For the moment the possibility of salt water contamination of the boiler feed water supply is of purely personal interest.

--David G. Brown
 

Erik Wood

Member
Aug 24, 2000
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Thank You Kind Mr. Hind. I shall post there directly and Hopefully the rest will see this.

Erik
 
Jan 5, 2001
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<FONT COLOR="ff0000">Hope you don’t mind me butting in with this titbit of information, coming from Edward Wilding at the British enquiry, page 487. I cannot access the work in progress group.


Quote:

‘I then flooded number five boiler room in identically the same way as I had previously flooded number six, adding its flooding effect to the forward spaces, and I got the black line, which, as you will notice, puts the forecastle entirely underwater, and also the forward end of the forward deck, B-deck.’





<FONT COLOR="ff0000">Am I missing something, or if this is true and boiler room five flooded suddenly at 12.45 a.m., then the foredecks would have submerged. If they had submerged this early, I find it hard to believe that all these additional openings would not have let in enough water to sink the ship by 1.15 a.m. It’s my belief that the forecastle submerged at about 1.50 a.m., so where do we account for the differences?

Kindest regards,

Mark.
 
Oct 28, 2000
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Mark -- I can't speak for the others. I believe that everyone agrees that something happened at the front end of BR #5 at approximately 12:40 a.m. The question of what happened will probably never be answered with certainty until we can all walk around that boiler room and see for ourselves. My personal opinion is that the "what" of the event is less important than the way it was perceived. I believe it was the sudden appearance of lots of water that finally convinced Captain Smith to launch the boats. Until that time, it was possible for Titanic to remain afloat. After the event in BR #5 it was obvious the ship would sink. Prior to 12:40 it was best to keep people on the ship. After that time...lifeboats.

--David G. Brown
 
Jan 5, 2001
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<FONT COLOR="ff0000">The Abandon Ship thread may be of interest to you.


I'll check that.

Best regards,

Mark.
 
Dec 31, 2000
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Hi Cal,
Thank you for the feedback. It is quite a delimena, trying to piece back together what had happened in 1912. But I do love a good mystery.
I will keep reading to see what you gentlemen come up with next in the discussion.
Cal, has anyone else made any comment about the water flooding over from F deck into boiler room # 4?
Sorry, I have missed alot, I haven't been on in a few days, so I will try to catch up!

Thanx

Beverly
 

Cal Haines

Member
Nov 20, 2000
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Hi Beverly,

It doesn't seem to have provoked much interest. A quick peak at when Wheat, Cavell and Barrett left for the boats, etc., looks as if there might be something to this. I haven't had time to go through it in detail, but here's the gist of it:

(I've only scanned Wheat's testimony.) Basically, he sees water in the Turkish bath, goes topside and finds them filling #9 boat, which left about 1:30. He escapes in #11, launched about 1:35.

Barrett leaves BR#5 after it floods and finds water on E-deck. He goes topside and winds up in boat #13, one of the last boats launched (at about 1:40 am).

Cavell reports water in BR#4 as he leaves, goes topside and escapes in boat #15, which is launched literally on top of Barrett's boat

Wilding's reconstruction of the flooding seems to have the water ready to come over the bulkhead from 6 into 5 about 40 minutes after the collision, or about 12:20. That's about what Barrett describes as he leaves the boiler room #5--but there's a good hour gap in there. Maybe Wilding's flooding rates were too quick?

Warm Regards,

Cal
 
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