Coal bunkers


Mike Spooner

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Whilst on the subject of a coal bunker fire, where does the responsibility fall between the two companies.
1. The shipyard Harland & Wolff . 2. Shipping company White Star Line?
Whilst under construction at H&W the responsibility must come from them until the ship is completed.
Where or when is the point that WSL will take ownership of the ship? We hear of the sea trial 2nd April 1912 with a White Star crew for that all important Board of Trade vessel seaworthy certificate. Were there H&W employers on board not just in the below decks but also on the bridge to?
If the coal bunker was known to started before leaving Belfast which of the two company's does the responsibility fall on?
 

Mike Spooner

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Second thoughts on the safety valves. If the valve is set at 215 psi the working pressure must be less, other wise the valve would be blowing off all the time. So I guess the firemen are working to keep the working pressure at 210 psi.
 

Seumas

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There seems to be miss understanding here. I am only quoted from Sean Molony book. As in his book he quoted that it was George Tulloch. Was convinced that the initial iceberg bump triggered a massive explosion, that such a blast blew an outward hole in the hull! There are not my words but as quoted in Molony book!
So lets try another one. John Dilley a bit of a tearaway in his private live. But as a fireman he seems to be good enough to be re-employed with White Star on Adriatic ship which will end his life in 1922, as an explosion took place in No 3 reserve coal bunker. The explosion was found to have arisen from spontaneous combustion of Welsh coal, the same problem Dilley grappled with on Titanic! True or false? Remember not my words! If you don't ask the question you will never known?

You gave a pretty strong impression of being a believer in Mr Molony's nonsense just the other day.

Did you bother to read "Fire and Ice" ? It will answer all your questions regarding the bunker fires and their effect (and indeed non-effect) on the ship.

So now your convinced that an explosion caused by spontaneous combustion of coal sank RMS Titanic ?
 
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So lets try another one. John Dilley a bit of a tearaway in his private live. But as a fireman he seems to be good enough to be re-employed with White Star on Adriatic ship which will end his life in 1922, as an explosion took place in No 3 reserve coal bunker. The explosion was found to have arisen from spontaneous combustion of Welsh coal, the same problem Dilley grappled with on Titanic! True or false?

False. According to Mark Chirnside a article he has mentioned it was Yorkshire coal.
Aside from that the explosion which killed 5 crew members and injured three others was caused by a short circuit. An electrician was fixing a cable to turn on a three-cluster light when the explosion occurred.
 
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Seumas

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False. According to Mark Chirnside a article he has mentioned it was Yorkshire coal.
Aside from that the explosion which killed 5 crew members and injured three others was caused by a short circuit. An electrician was fixing a cable to turn on a three-cluster light when the explosion occurred.

And with that, yet another awful coal bunker theory as to why the Titanic sank (explosion caused by spontaneous combustion), slips below the waves. :)
 
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Mike Spooner

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Looks like another Molony theory hits the dust!
Just a matter of intrested is there a list of Molony misleading information available?
I can't find the Fire & Ice book. Has someone got one I can borrow for a few quid?
There is an article in the What Really Sank THE TITANIC book, on the coal bunker fire and certainty does not believe was the reason for the lost of Titanic.
But does state three witnesses testified that they recalled the coal bunker fire began in Belfast. Two of those witnesses. I don't know if they are referring to Charles Hendrickson and Frederick Barrett?
 
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But does state three witnesses testified that they recalled the coal bunker fire began in Belfast. Two of those witnesses. I don't know if they are referring to Charles Hendrickson and Frederick Barrett?
Hendrickson heard that it started in Belfast. Nobody gave direct evidence as far as I know. That could easily have been an assumption by someone. It was smoldering while the ship was in Southampton, and perhaps discovered at that time. By the way, the second engineers who are in charge of each watch are required to inspect all bunkers before going off watch and report any problems discovered.
 

Seumas

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I can't find the Fire & Ice book. Has someone got one I can borrow for a few quid?

I did actually post the link not once but twice on the last page but you ignored it. No matter now as Harland has kindly provided the link.

"Fire and Ice" is not a book. It's long research article. All your questions about the coal bunker fire will be answered and there are many helpful pictures, plans and diagrams provided. It also very easily smashes the supposed photographic "proof" of fire damage.

The authors of "Fire and Ice" decided to make it freely available online (and for download) because they were appalled at the massive amount of positive publicity Mr Molony got (particularly in the UK and Ireland) in pushing this pseudo-history and how easily people were taken in by it.
 
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Mike Spooner

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The more I hear of the coal bunker fire I think it has been blown out of proportion. As the saying goes is Molony trying to make mountains out of mole hills? To sale more books perhaps?
However I cannot imagine for one moment that White Star gave H&W a purchase order for the delivery of a luxury liner with a coal bunker fire!
The coal bunker fire becomes more of an nuisance they could well do without. Yet some one at the Director level has given the order the ship will sail as to the schedule date 10th April.
What I have to question was this the right decision made in the first place as the national coal strike had lay up many ships due to the lack of coal. Then transferred 4,400 tons coal from 5 other ships. Why didn't they just delay the crossing date as there seems to be crates of furniture and equipment to complete the ship yet left behind. H&W had repair facilities at Southampton why didn't White Star hand over the job to them. I can see H&W are offering a guarantee for the ship as 9 persons from H&W will sail with the ship to. Yet White Star land up fixing the problem them self! Then I think of the poor devils trimmers and firemen regarded the worse job on the ship having to put up with extra back breaking work load in the extreme heat of 120F and breather in coal dust.
Was there a financial problem? It would appear the finance was well taken care of through a successful Mortgage Debenture scheme. So what was the rush?
I can only see this as poor management decisions coming from the top to achieve there own goal!
 

B-rad

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My bliefe, 4 what its worth (if it is worth anything ) The fact that neither H&W, WS or the BOT thought nothing big of it I believe speaks more to the condition of the 'fire' then anything else. To lay up a ship that was still in sailing condition, especially with quite a bit of IMM ships already laid up, would be more costful. Ships cost money, crew cost money, storage for goods cost money, and if a ship is not moving no money is being made. The transfer of coal probably started sometime b4 Titanic arrived as that would have took a lot of labor, which again cost $.
 

Mike Spooner

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Whist the thread is partly on the coal bunker fire, I can see a bit of shambles came from senior management decisions been placed here by putting unnecessary pressure or stress on there own employees of WSL?
When looking at the completion of the Olympic Ship which was the worlds largest luxury liner and physical the same size as Titanic, what a different in the completion for her maiden crossing. It would appear H&W have built the ship ahead of time to the point of hanging around waiting to enter the Thompson dry dock by the 1st April 1911. Which was not without its own problems to complete. (Those who have not visited Belfast I can say the dry dock is well worth a visit and an impressive site to see indeed when down in the basement).
As for Titanic delivery date has not quite gone to plan for H&W! AS for the Olympic even had time for 3 public open days with a small admission price given to local charities. Sounds to me there is no shortness of money here!
As for the national coal strike cover, that can be found in: ON A SEA OF GLASS book. In the book it also covers the incompletion work of the ship to. This indicates me the ship should of never left Belfast before the outstanding work was completed.
I also look at the WS crew members coming under unnecessary stress to! Captain Smith who had a very difficult time since the collision of Olympic and HMS Hawke war ship in September 1911. Facing stressful court herring in a tempt to blame him for the accident. Followed on by the roughest Atlantic crossings. This are worrying times for any sea captain virtually on duty for 24 hours a day. The poor man needs shore time rest. But he not get that as Olympic returning on another rough crossing arrival in Southampton 30th March dock at 7.00 morning. The time completion of Customs and Immigration paperwork there is no time to waste for the Titanic sea trials set for early morning 1st April. Where a train to London across the city to another station for Liverpool station were an overnight ferry to Belfast. One blessing for him the trial is postponed for one day due to high winds. Now comes the officer changes were Chief officer William Murdoch was forced to step back to First officer and First officer Charles Lightoller demoted to Second officer. Yet there was from the 25th March a confident captain in Belfast already there in command of Titanic, who could of taken the maiden crossing. Captain Herbert Haddock. Who finds himself been rush down to Southampton to take command of Olympic crossing 3nd April. He seem to taken more than two third of the crew members who are formulary with Olympic class ships to!
Whom to blame for these hasty decision? H&W may of have there problems and courses in delays.
I see the blame coming from the top! The Board of Directors of WSL. Which Director is know to make quick decision without thinking at all angles first? The plain fact the ship should of remain in Belfast to complete the outstanding work. Were a coal bunker fire is sorted out and with no last minute crew members changes to. I probably the most incompetent decision taken on was the coal bunker fire. The ship comes with a guarantee from H&W yet WSL decides take on to fix the problem!
 
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Bob_Read

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For the umpteenth time, none of what you mention had anything to do with the sinking of Titanic.
 
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I also look at the WS crew members coming under unnecessary stress to! Captain Smith who had a very difficult time since the collision of Olympic and HMS Hawke war ship in September 1911. Facing stressful court herring in a tempt to blame him for the accident. Followed on by the roughest Atlantic crossings. This are worrying times for any sea captain virtually on duty for 24 hours a day. The poor man needs shore time rest. But he not get that as Olympic returning on another rough crossing arrival in Southampton 30th March dock at 7.00 morning. The time completion of Customs and Immigration paperwork there is no time to waste for the Titanic sea trials set for early morning 1st April. Where a train to London across the city to another station for Liverpool station were an overnight ferry to Belfast. One blessing for him the trial is postponed for one day due to high winds. Now comes the officer changes were Chief officer William Murdoch was forced to step back to First officer and First officer Charles Lightoller demoted to Second officer. Yet there was from the 25th March a confident captain in Belfast already there in command of Titanic, who could of taken the maiden crossing. Captain Herbert Haddock. Who finds himself been rush down to Southampton to take command of Olympic crossing 3nd April. He seem to taken more than two third of the crew members who are formulary with Olympic class ships to!
Whom to blame for these hasty decision? H&W may of have there problems and courses in delays.
I see the blame coming from the top! The Board of Directors of WSL. Which Director is know to make quick decision without thinking at all angles first? The plain fact the ship should of remain in Belfast to complete the outstanding work.
Were a coal bunker fire is sorted out and with no last minute crew members changes to. I probably the most incompetent decision taken on was the coal bunker fire. The ship comes with a guarantee from H&W yet WSL decides take on to fix the problem!

It was already planned that Captain Smith would take over Titanic (as well as later the third sister) and Haddock would get Olympic so no "hasty decisions". The changing of the Officers rank in case of Murdoch & Lightoller was more a result of the coal strike and ships laid up. Chief Wilde joint the ship at Southampton and actually it was unclear if he would stay on the ship or not. However this has nothing to do with anything about the coal bunker or collision or sinking.
Titanic was ready, the few "inclomplete" parts were nothing which would cause a delay. The ship was not fully booked and on a ship there will be always something which did not work or need to be fixed (that is why the guarantee group was on board, it was the same on Olympic's maiden voyage).
From Leading stoker Barrett we know the "fire" was discovered at sailing day shortly after departure. It was nothing big and work against it started immediately (which was the job of engineers, firemen, trimmers and greasers).
 
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Seumas

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It was already planned that Captain Smith would take over Titanic (as well as later the third sister) and Haddock would get Olympic so no "hasty decisions". The changing of the Officers rank in case of Murdoch & Lightoller was more a result of the coal strike and ships laid up. Chief Wilde joint the ship at Southampton and actually it was unclear if he would stay on the ship or not. However this has nothing to do with anything about the coal bunker or collision or sinking.
Titanic was ready, the few "inclomplete" parts were nothing which would cause a delay. The ship was not fully booked and on a ship there will be always something which did not work or need to be fixed (that is why the guarantee group was on board, it was the same on Olympic's maiden voyage).
From Leading stoker Barrett we know the "fire" was discovered at sailing day shortly after departure. It was nothing big and work against it started immediately (which was the job of engineers, firemen, trimmers and greasers).

Your patience with these tiresome posts is to be commended, Ioannis.
 
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Mike Spooner

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For the umpteenth time! I never said the coal bunker fire was the reason for the lost of Titanic.
In my opinon I find the company WSL was been poorly run by the Board of Directors poor decisions for the Titanic future. To take ownership of an uncompleted ship that only can come from the Directors.
In my opinion the course the lost of Titanic was the captain and officers poor safety preparation approach towards the icefield at excessive speed in the pitch dark. Having your company boss on board certainly did help the matter either!
Then when you see another captain approach the same icefield in the correct manor at reduce speed and extra lookouts textbook correct indeed. Why didn't Titanic do the same? Or perhaps captain Lord didn't have his company boss on board!
 
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For the umpteenth time! I never said the coal bunker fire was the reason for the lost of Titanic.
In my opinon I find the company WSL was been poorly run by the Board of Directors poor decisions for the Titanic future. To take ownership of an uncompleted ship that only can come from the Directors.

What do you mean with "uncompleted ship"? She made the trial test and passed every other test done. Thomas Andrews wrote to his wife while at Southampton that the ship is complete. So where is here the "poor decision" you are coming up time and again?!

In my opinion the course the lost of Titanic was the captain and officers poor safety preparation approach towards the icefield at excessive speed in the pitch dark. Having your company boss on board certainly did help the matter either!
Then when you see another captain approach the same icefield in the correct manor at reduce speed and extra lookouts textbook correct indeed. Why didn't Titanic do the same? Or perhaps captain Lord didn't have his company boss on board!

Ismay was not a factor. Every other ship in the same position did the same, going full speed ahead. (Titanic was even not at full speed at the time of collision. On Carpathia Captain Rostron had a bridge full of officers and aside from the men in the crows nest also lookouts at the bow. Yet the ship nearly hit an iceberg when going towards Titanic's emergency lifeboat No. 2.
Californian was "surounded" by ice and is something different (also no passengers aboard).
 
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Mike Spooner

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You can have many schedule plans as you like. But come the day if the person is not up to the job due to illness or personal reasons you must have plan B or a standby. I believe Smith was under huge pressure and stress and clearly lacking in shore time leave. Just remember Smith was an human and not a ROBOT!
 
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