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Mike Spooner

Sep 21, 2017
I am quite sure the coal bunker fire must of been discussed many times over the years. But I can't find it at present.
The question why I ask is looking at the IMMC rule 248:
According to Rule No 248 of the IMMCo’s ‘Ship Rules and Uniform Regulations’ that was in force at the time:
248. Examination of Coal Bunkers-The respective senior engineers of each watch, before going off duty, must go through the coal bunkers, and note their conditions on the log slate, and should there be any signs of spontaneous combustion taking place, they are at once to report same to the Chief Engineer, who is immediately to notify the Commander. All coal should, as often as possible, be worked out of the bunkers.
As captain Smith was know as a safe captain. Was he over ruled by the Directors
of White Star that the ship must sail on the 10th April? Coal bunker fire or not. As I see a safe captain would made sure the coal bunker was sorted out whist in dock before set sailing again?


Coal bunker fires were common and how they were handled was a matter of routine. There was no danger in sailing with a bunker fire. This is evidenced by no emergency measures having been taken and that the fire was eventually extinguished. If you wanted to delay the sailing for a minor bunker fire you would never have risen through the ranks to become captain of a ship like Titanic in the first place.
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