Did Lightoller's panic cost lives?

Do you think Lightoller cost lives because of his panic?

  • Yes

    Votes: 7 33.3%
  • No

    Votes: 14 66.7%

  • Total voters
    21
H

Haashir Ahmad

Member
1st officer Murdoch played a cool and calm head in the sinking of the ship, he loaded the boats close to its full capacity and didn't lower the boats half full or quickly! Murdoch also followed the orders correctly, the captain ordered "Women and children first", Murdoch allowed men to get on if they were no women in the area or women wanted to get in! This action saved quiet a lot of lives! However 2nd officer Lightoller was merely panicked throughout the sinking! He allowed no men to get on the boats and took the captains order to "Women and children only", this action cost a number of lives in the sinking! Lightoller's panic also caused the boats to be lowered quickly not giving the crew enough time to put a number of passengers into the boats! Lightoller allowed most of the boats to go with only half full! There were a number of women who wouldn't get on the boat, Lightoller could've allowed the men who did went to go in the boats saving the more lives! But Lightoller was still a hero for many!
 
Arun Vajpey

Arun Vajpey

Member
While it is true that Murdoch showed greater maturity and common sense in loading his lifeboats compared with Lightoller, it is not true that all the former’s boats were ‘nearly full’. The earlier starboard lifeboats like #7, #5, #1 etc were only partly loaded. Perhaps Murdoch believed that they could be loaded further at water level. But he did interpret the situation and orders correctly and allowed men to board where there were no women or children in the immediate vicinity. That meant that a lot of male survivors owed their lives to Murdoch.

I don’t think Lightoller ‘panicked’ or anything but he interpreted “women and children FIRST” as “women and children ONLY” and went to ridiculous lengths to enforce it. Therefore, there is some truth in the belief that Lightoller’s stubbornness cost many male lives.
 
I

Ioannis Georgiou

Member
There were not many people around when the forward starboard boats were loaded. Most found a place in Nos. 7, 5 & 3. When No. 1 was loaded it were mainly crew members who were still there while several passengers went aft or to the other side.

Lightoller was not in panic. His "interpretation" woman and children only and letting half empty boats to the water was also followed by Chief Wilde and Captain Smith himself.
 
William Oakes

William Oakes

Member
Lightoller never panicked.He followed his orders.
As the night progressed into morning and the severity of the sinking became clear, he and passengers changed their ways of thinking.
Lightoller was, and is, a hero.
 
Arun Vajpey

Arun Vajpey

Member
Lightoller was, and is, a hero.

Lightoller was a good company man would would have made an excellent modern Corporate "yes man" . He was most certainly NOT a Titanic hero. It would not be unfair to say that he needlessly turned away directly or indirectly at least 50 people, mostly adult men, who did not survive but who could have been saved without compromising anyone else had Lightoller used a bit of common sense like Murdoch.

The other thing is that to my dying day I'll believe that Lightoller never expected to go down with the ship himself. He was a born survivor and IMO always had a flexible survival mode that could be adjusted depending on the circumstances. Mind you, that is NOT something for which that I would blame him; if I was in his shoes, I would also have taken a chance if survival was possible.

But there is no excuse for his turning away men, even teenage kids, even when there was room in the lifeboats.
 
William Oakes

William Oakes

Member
A hero? Why?
For not filling lifeboats properly? For sending away stewardesses from lifeboats because they were crew? For not letting children over 12 years into a lifeboat?
Pretty easy for you to judge from the comfort of your chair.
You weren't on a sinking ship charged with loading boats under extreme duress.
Yes, Lightoller was, and IS a hero.
 
William Oakes

William Oakes

Member
Lightoller was a good company man would would have made an excellent modern Corporate "yes man" . He was most certainly NOT a Titanic hero. It would not be unfair to say that he needlessly turned away directly or indirectly at least 50 people, mostly adult men, who did not survive but who could have been saved without compromising anyone else had Lightoller used a bit of common sense like Murdoch.

The other thing is that to my dying day I'll believe that Lightoller never expected to go down with the ship himself. He was a born survivor and IMO always had a flexible survival mode that could be adjusted depending on the circumstances. Mind you, that is NOT something for which that I would blame him; if I was in his shoes, I would also have taken a chance if survival was possible.

But there is no excuse for his turning away men, even teenage kids, even when there was room in the lifeboats.
Lightoller did his job and followed orders.
He IS a hero.
 
William Oakes

William Oakes

Member
I did not know that doing his job makes someone to a hero.
Under extreme duress, I would say that it does, but that is my opinion.
Every officer on board that ship was a hero in my book, except for perhaps Hitchens, whose conduct was unbecoming, but I even give him a pass because I believe that he was having a complete nervous breakdown.
You have your opinion and I have mine and I doubt that either of us will change each others minds.
I respect your opinion, but I disagree.
These men were heroes all.
 
Arun Vajpey

Arun Vajpey

Member
Under extreme duress, I would say that it does, but that is my opinion.
Every officer on board that ship was a hero in my book, except for perhaps Hitchens, whose conduct was unbecoming, but I even give him a pass because I believe that he was having a complete nervous breakdown.
You have your opinion and I have mine and I doubt that either of us will change each others minds.
I respect your opinion, but I disagree.
These men were heroes all.
First of all, QM Hichens was not an officer. By the way, it is Hichens, not Hitchens.

Secondly, The situation was stressful for all concerned but Lightoller took no greater burden upon himself than anyone else. True, they all did their jobs, but some better than others. In the aftermath of the disaster, Lightoller, being the senior surviving officer and off-duty at the time of the collision, found himself in a position of getting most of the attention, not all of which was providential or coincidental. Pitman left the ship early and kept a relatively low profile afterwards, Boxhall was on duty at the time of collision and had questions to answer about his navigation etc and so it was all Lightoller and to some extent Lowe who made the headlines, especially in later years. The laughable portrayal of Kenneth More in Lightoller's role in the 1958 film A Night To Remember is an example.

You are welcome to hero-worship Lightoller till the cows come home (and even afterwards, if it pleases you), but that does not make him a hero. No way.
 
William Oakes

William Oakes

Member
First of all, QM Hichens was not an officer. By the way, it is Hichens, not Hitchens.

Secondly, The situation was stressful for all concerned but Lightoller took no greater burden upon himself than anyone else. True, they all did their jobs, but some better than others. In the aftermath of the disaster, Lightoller, being the senior surviving officer and off-duty at the time of the collision, found himself in a position of getting most of the attention, not all of which was providential or coincidental. Pitman left the ship early and kept a relatively low profile afterwards, Boxhall was on duty at the time of collision and had questions to answer about his navigation etc and so it was all Lightoller and to some extent Lowe who made the headlines, especially in later years. The laughable portrayal of Kenneth More in Lightoller's role in the 1958 film A Night To Remember is an example.

You are welcome to hero-worship Lightoller till the cows come home (and even afterwards, if it pleases you), but that does not make him a hero. No way.
That is your opinion.
I'm aware that Hichens wasn't an officer but that evening he was placed in an authoritarian role and failed.
As for my misspelling of the name, it happens.
Don't belittle me.
I haven't disrespected you, act like a man and be respectful.
This isn't high school where we are trying to out do one another.
I respect your opinions, but I disagree with you.
Lightoller and all of the officers were and are heroes, and that is my opinion.
Cheers!
 
Top