First 40 minutes


Thomas C.

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I spent the last few days reading and matching the testimonies of the survivors. The period of the first 40 minutes is very important, because it show as how fast the ship was sinking and how fast the crew was reacting. I hope I have done it well and everything is in the right place. Every posts and questions are welcome.

timeline - 40 minutes.png
 
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B-rad

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This area of the sinking is in fact the area in which I have been focusing the largest part of my research on for the last couple of years. When I first joined this forum I was writing a book called 11:40, which was to focus on this first hour, it was about 500pgs. long -though in rough draft form. I mentioned this in my post here Possible setback of clocks before collision (post 42 July 13, 2016)

When finished I was going to work on a subsequent book solely about the hour after that, than another the hour after that. Needless to say that book hasn't happened yet! On joining this forum I learned there is much I still did not know.

Anyway, since then I've been developing large format research papers into specific areas of this time frame, utilizing the material gathered for my book and newly learned material.

I will gladly share this information with you privately as they are still works in progress and things that I've been putting my time and energy into- and have not shared due to them not being ready and because I don't want the info to be scattered before the info can be sourced back to my work.

With that said I've also been looking to maybe collaborate, so perhaps we can discuss this if interested. I haven't the time to go through the details of your work so far but I do see some things I too have come to conclusions with and some things I am curious as to where/how you came to those conclusions.

Great work thus far though.
Sorry for lengthy reply that doesn't really help you. Just wanted to let you know I am very interested in this area myself.

:)
 
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George Jacub

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I spent the last few days reading and matching the testimonies of the survivors. The period of the first 40 minutes is very important, because it show as how fast the ship was sinking and how fast the crew was reacting. I hope I have done it well and everything is in the right place. Every posts and questions are welcome.

View attachment 42174
You need to read the latest post on my blog where I follow Boxhall minute-by-minute from the time he returned to the bridge after his second trip below to the time the first rocket was launched from the Titanic:
Titanic's Secrets Unfold: Who fired the first rocket on the Titanic
You will see that events happened much, much sooner than you think. Boxhall alerted the off-duty officers well before midnight, the first CQD was heard minutes after that, Boxhall was told around midnight by the Captain that the ship was doomed according to Mr. Andrews, and so on.
 
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I looked at Thomas's chart and read your article George. Both very good...thanks. Only thing I am wondering about...if the safety's on the boiler lifted at 11:47 you would think that would have awoken any of the officers asleep and no need to wake them...they would have been on deck to see why. But that is just speculation on my part. I only have experience with the safety's lifting on my power plant. We would get calls from people 5 miles away wondering what was going on.
 

B-rad

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Lightoller and Pitman both awoke from the collision. Lowe is the one who slept through everything. Wilde was out and about shortly after but we don't know if he awoke himself or if someone woke him.
 
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Thomas C.

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I just spoted a little error in my timeline, which isn't actually an error. As you can see, captain visited marconi room 3 times. It is a difference between unadjusted time and partly adjusted time. It is agencja good point of view to see two moments in one timeline.
 
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Thomas C.

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You will see that events happened much, much sooner than you think. Boxhall alerted the off-duty officers well before midnight, the first CQD was heard minutes after that, Boxhall was told around midnight by the Captain that the ship was doomed according to Mr. Andrews, and so on.
I read your posts before I made this timeline. I will just say that I will not agree with you. This is from your post: The first crucial hour.

11:45
The Captain sees the commutator read 5 degrees to starboard.

Hichens:
The ship had a list of 5 degrees to starboard."
"How long after the impact, or collision?"- "Judging roughly, about 5 minutes…"


Look what Hichens said later.
I could hardly tell you, sir. Judging roughly, about 5 minutes; about 5 to 10 minutes

I can understand this estimating, but what is happening later does not make much sense.

The Captain alerts the wireless operators he's ordered an inspection.

The Captain’s first visit to the wireless room is determined by working backward from his next visit (which Bride estimated took place 10 minutes later) and which resulted in the first distress call being sent.

Captain couldn't visit marconi room before carpenter report. The captain of the biggest and the most safest ship was thinking about the distress signal when the ship was just listing. Do you really think that the captain was thinking about distress signal before he knew how badly the ship was demaged.

The carpenter and Mr.Smith give their reports to the Captain. There are no eyewitness accounts unless we accept the story of Seaman James McGough
in the 1912 publication of Lloyds Weekly News titled The Deathless Story of Titanic/ Seaman’s Vivid Description.


"I heard Captain Smith ordering the carpenter to make soundings. I heard the report of ‘Chips’ who said "Ten degrees list to starboard."
"My God" cried the Captain. "Bos’un, pipe all hand on deck."

But we know what happened immediately afterward.


First Class passenger Gilbert Tucker sees the Captain giving orders to a group of officers.

"I started back to my cabin and in the main companionway I ran across Captain Smith with a group of his officers. As I passed he was giving orders to call all hands, get life belts on them, and prepare to lower away the boats…As I looked at my watch then it was about 11:45. Gilbert Tucker, Jr., Tells of Wreck, Albany Times-Union, April 19, 1912.

I think you don't understand how the time flows.
How it was possible for captain to done all this things in the period of about 1 minute!
People do not teleport from one place to another. They must waste some time to get to this place.

0 Captain checks commutator
1 Captain visits marconi room
2 Carpenter gives his report to the captain
3 Captain goes below
5 Captain in the main companionway

11:48
Olliver returns to the bridge. Wilde orders him to find the bosun. Olliver finds the bosun, who, at this point, is headed to the bridge.

The same thing. From the bridge to the engine room is about 3 minutes of walking. Olliver said that he stayed in engine room for 2 or 3 minues.
3+2.5+3=8,5
Where is time to find the carpenter:confused:

Lightoller was dressed and out of his room after the crew were called (approx. 11:50 p.m.)

Boxhall said that he was below on his 1 trip from 5 to 10 minutes. He also said that 2 trip took him longer than 1 trip.

11 41 Boxhall goes below
11 48 Boxhall on the bridge (7 minutes after)
11 56 Boxhall on the bridge (8 minutes after)

These are just some examples but there are many more. Your timeline is limited to individual moments on it. You do not take into account the time needed to get from one place to another. Timeline is mostly based on the accounts from the newspapers and memories of the survivors. Both sources are not very reliable because most of them were created at least a year after the disaster, and therefore they contain a lot of inaccuracies and errors. The last thing I want to mark is that you match the testimonies of the survivors to the time difference of 1 hour and 33 minutes, even if the witnesses gave a different estimations.



 
A

Aaron_2016

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I read your posts before I made this timeline. I will just say that I will not agree with you. This is from your post: The first crucial hour.

The Captain’s first visit to the wireless room is determined by working backward from his next visit (which Bride estimated took place 10 minutes later) and which resulted in the first distress call being sent.

Captain couldn't visit marconi room before carpenter report. The captain of the biggest and the most safest ship was thinking about the distress signal when the ship was just listing. Do you really think that the captain was thinking about distress signal before he knew how badly the ship was demaged.

In late February 1912 the Olympic commanded by Captain Smith had lost a propeller blade. News reports of the incident said that Captain Smith had sent a wireless message to the White Star offices before the carpenter had inspected the ship. Reports said the Captain believed the ship had suffered serious damage and he told the White Star offices that he would be proceeding immediately for Belfast for repairs. The news reports said the Captain sent out a second wireless message after the inspection had been completed and told the White Star offices that the damage was not as bad as he first feared and that he would instead proceed to England. It is possible the Captain told the wireless operators on the Titanic to stand by and be ready to send out their position and inform the White Star offices what they were intending to do. This is possibly why there are claims that the ship was proceeding to Halifax as the ship turned north and QM Olliver witnessed Captain Smith order half speed ahead. Perhaps the carpenter's report had come in just as they were setting off and they immediately stopped engines again.


.
 
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George Jacub

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Thomas, you wrote: "Captain couldn't visit marconi room before carpenter report."

Yet that is exactly what the evidence says. Bride, the surviving wireless operator, said the Captain popped his head into the wireless room, told the operators he was having an inspection made, and advised them to get ready to send a distress signal, but not to send it yet. That "inspection" was obviously the inspection being conducted by the carpenter. The Captain first ordered Olliver to find the carpenter and have him sound the ship. When time went by and he hadn't heard from the carpenter, he sent Boxhall to find the carpenter with the same orders as he gave Olliver.
He got the results of the inspection from the carpenter, who literally arrived as Boxhall was going to find him, and ten minutes after the colllision, the bosun was piping all hands on deck, five minutes later the deck hands were getting the order to clear the boats and less than five minutes after that, the first CQD was heard. Bride said the Captain returned about 10 minutes after his first visit and gave the order to send the distress message. Tucker said he heard the Captain order the boats cleared five minutes after the collison---and before the bosun's call. The timing fits like a glove.

Read also what Lightoller said in his 1935 book: "Andrews, the designer, and nephen of the late Lord Pirrie was making the trip with us, and it was he, familiar with every nook and corner in her, who made a quick tour of inspection with the Carpenter and reported her condition to Captain Smith."
I didn't cite this in my timeline because the observation was made 43 years after the Titanic sank, and despite the source, I am uncomfortable with using any evidence that many years later if I can help it. In this case, Lightoller's comment was not needed as more contemporary evidence was sufficient. Note that at midnight the Captain told Boxhall the Titanic was doomed and he cited Andrews as his source.

You wrote "Your timeline is limited to individual moments on it. You do not take into account the time needed to get from one place to another." Precisely. There is no way to tell how long it took anyone to travel about the sinking ship. There are broad estimates (i.e. 30 seconds to a minute to cross from starboard to port, from a measurement made by movie director James Cameron on his replica ship) and while they have a place in research to test various options of what happened they are not evidence. And certainly not evidence are guesses by anyone 105 years after the fact of how long it would take to do anything. Those "individual moments" on the other hand are evidence and seeing how they fit a timeline provides the flow of events.
 

Thomas C.

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That "inspection" was obviously the inspection being conducted by the carpenter.
Senator SMITH.
Do you know what time you arose from your bed?

Mr. BRIDE.
It must have been about a quarter to 12, sir; about 5 minutes to 12, ship's time.

Senator SMITH.
Five minutes to 12, ship's time?

Mr. BRIDE.
Yes, sir.

...

Senator SMITH.
And you awakened yourself?

Mr. BRIDE.
Yes.

Senator SMITH.
Did you arise immediately?

Mr. BRIDE.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
And dress yourself?

Mr. BRIDE.
I went out to speak to him before I dressed. I only had pajamas on.

Senator SMITH.
Before you put your clothes on?

Mr. BRIDE.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
What did you say to him?

Mr. BRIDE.
I asked him how he was getting on.

Senator SMITH.
What did he say?

Mr. BRIDE.
He had a big batch of telegrams from Cape Race that he had just finished.

Senator SMITH.
He told you that?

Mr. BRIDE.
Yes.

Senator SMITH.
Had he finished his work?

Mr. BRIDE:
Yes.

Senator SMITH.
This was after the collision?

Mr. BRIDE:
After the collision.

Senator SMITH.
Did you remain in the operating room?

Mr. BRIDE:
I got dressed first.

Senator SMITH.
You returned to the bedroom and got dressed?

Mr. BRIDE.
Yes, sir.

Senator SMITH.
During that time did Mr. Phillips tell you that the boat had been injured?

Mr. BRIDE.
He told me that he thought she had got damaged in some way and that he expected that we should have to go back to Harland & Wolff's.

Senator SMITH.
Those are the builders, at Belfast?

Mr. BRIDE.
Yes.

Senator SMITH.
What did you do then?

Mr. BRIDE.
I took over the watch from him.

Senator SMITH.
You took the watch from him?

Mr. BRIDE.
Yes, sir.

...

"I was standing by Phillips, telling him to go to bed, when the captain put his head in the cabin, 'We've struck an iceberg,' the captain said, 'and I'm having aninspection made to tell what it has done for us. You had better get ready to send out a call for assistance, but don't send it until I tell you. ' The captain went away, and in ten minutes, I should estimate, he came back.

Bride said that he woke up at 11 55. 10 minutes later than your carpenter report and 5 minutes than my. I will give him another 5 minutes to dress. A little after midnight captain told Philips and Bride to prepare to send a distress signal. After 10 minutes he told them to send it. It is clear that when the captain visited marconi room for the first time, he was going to make an inspection not the carpenter.
According to Bride first distress signal was sent between 12 10 - 12 15. Bride testimony clearly show as that the first distress signal could not be sent at 11 58 but much later.
 

George Jacub

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Not clear in the slightest. You conveniently overlook the hard evidence that the bosun piped 'all hands on deck' ten minutes after the collision and five minutes later the men were getting the order from Murdoch to clear the boats. Lightoller said the clearing was done in 15 minutes and he asked the Captain, who was obviously still on the bridge, if he should lower the boats (level with A deck) and then if he should load them with passengers,. You would have the good Captain abandoning the ship before he even did his "inspection."

And words have meaning. " I'm having an inspection made" does NOT mean 'I'm going to do an inspection' Just the opposite. It means somebody, but not me, will inspect the damage.

You also conveniently ignore the evidence of Sen. Theodore E. Burton. a member of the Senate Inquiry, and his private meeting with Boxhall. The A.P. story about that meeting, carried across the country the next day, reported that "He (Boxhall) said Capt. Smith had told him about 20 minutes after the collision that the Titanic was doomed and that J.W.Andrews... had given him the information." Twenty minutes after the collision the Captain shares the information that the ship is doomed. But you have him casually waiting another15 minutes before he goes on his own walkabout.

Have you read my post on Boxhall's movements? It's here: Titanic's Secrets Unfold: Who fired the first rocket on the Titanic

Boxhall recalled that meeting with the Captain at which the Captain told him he (the Captain) had already ordered the CQD sent. By his earliest recollection to Senator Burton that meeting was at about midnight. 'Already sent' means sent before midnight. Like, say, 11:58 p.m.when it was first heard. Not "much later." as you imagine. The facts fit together perfectly in a tight narrative.
 

Jay Roches

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What was the source for "Captain decides to evacuate 3rd class passengers via Scotland Road" at 11:53? It's ten minutes before the order to give out lifebelts and swing out the lifeboats. It's also before Smith knew that the ship would sink, according to most sources. If the source is accurate, there are several ramifications.
 

Thomas C.

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You conveniently overlook the hard evidence that the bosun piped 'all hands on deck' ten minutes after the collision and five minutes later the men were getting the order from Murdoch to clear the boats.
If clearing the boats began at 11 55, how it was possible for Symons to heard 8 bells before 11 55?

11418. Before you go on telling us what happened then, can you give us any idea what time it was when you noticed this water reaching nearly to the coamings of the hatch?
- I should think, roughly estimating it, it would be about five minutes to twelve, because, as I was on my way to the deck, so they struck eight bells in the crow's-nest.

But you have him casually waiting another15 minutes before he goes on his own walkabout.
Annie Robinson:
13280. (The Commissioner - To the witness.) About what time was this?
- About half-an-hour after she struck.

13281. After the collision?
- After the collision about half-an-hour.

13282. (Mr. Raymond Asquith.) Did you see the Captain and Mr. Andrews about this time?
- The mail man passed along first and he returned with Mr. McElroy and the Captain and they went in the direction of the mail room, but that was before.

13283. It was seeing the Captain and Mr. Andrews going to the mail room that made you go there?
- I followed after they had come back.

Night watchman Johnson
3367. Did you do anything after that?
- Yes; I went down and walked along the saloon and saw Mr. Andrews come down and go down to the engine room, and then I saw the Captain directly following him, and then I followed Mr. Andrews after he came up from the engine room.
...
3371. And he and the Captain came through?
- No, he came three or four minutes before the Captain.
...
3397. How long should you say after the shock was it that you saw water in the baggage room?
- I went down to call the second steward, Mr. Dodd. I took plenty of time and it must have been a good twenty-five minutes after I met Mr. Wheat coming up, and he said "What is it?" I said "I think it is a bit serious."

Assistant Second Steward Wheat
10893. And what did you learn when you got to E deck?
- Well, I met the night watchman. I think his name was Johnson. He told me she was making water badly forward.

10894. Was that man Johnson saved?
- Yes.

10895. I think we have had him here as a Witness; he is a Scotsman, is he not?
- Yes.

10896. You met Johnson?
- Yes.

10897. And he told you she was making water forward?
- Yes.

10898. Did you go forward yourself?
- Yes, I went forward myself.

10899. On the E deck?
- Yes, forward on E deck.

10900. And what did you find when you went forward on the E deck?
- I went down to the Post Office room, which is down on G. You will find a stairway leading from E down to the Post Office and baggage room.

10901. I want to trace this because I understand this is only a few minutes after the accident?
- Ten minutes or a quarter of an hour.

Steward Mackay
10691. What did you do next?
- The first order I heard was from the second Steward to close all watertight doors on F deck.

10692. To close the watertight doors on F deck?
- That was the first order I heard given.

10693. How long after the accident was it you heard that order?
- A matter of about a quarter of an hour.

10694. And did you go to F deck to obey that order?
- No. The third class chief steward was sent for, for his men to do that order.

10695. Was that Mr. Kieran?
- Yes.

10696. Did you see the Captain about this time?
- No, I saw the Captain a matter of about 20 minutes after that.

10697. What did you see him do?
- I saw him come down the working staircase and go along, I presume, to the Chief Engineer's room. About 10 minutes after that I saw him come back.

10 Johnson meets Wheat
15 Wheat in the mail room
15 Mackay hears order to close watertight doors
30 Captain in the mail room
35 Johnson sees captain
35 Mackay sees captain
45 Mackay sees captain returning from the engine room
 

Thomas C.

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What was the source for "Captain decides to evacuate 3rd class passengers via Scotland Road" at 11:53? It's ten minutes before the order to give out lifebelts and swing out the lifeboats. It's also before Smith knew that the ship would sink, according to most sources. If the source is accurate, there are several ramifications.
Hendrickson
4947. Did anything happen before that to speak of?
- No; I think I had a bit of trouble to get through the steerage passengers with those lamps. They were in the working alleyway, going along with trunks and bags and portmanteaux.

4948. That is when you went with the lamps?
- Yes.

4949. There was a crowd of them?
- Yes, a big bunch of them.

4950. When you came aft again were they still there?
- Yes, they were working their way aft; they were going towards aft.

4951. They were going aft with their luggage?
- Yes.

4952. Did you see where they went to?
- No, I did not trouble much about looking. I was on my own duty at the time.

4953. Did you ultimately come up from the engine room?
- Yes.

Cavell
4222. When the lights went out what happened?
- I went on deck to see what it was, and I saw people running along wet through with lifebelts in their hands.

4223. Did you go up the alleyway?
- My mate said we had struck an iceberg.

4224. How far up did you go; what deck did you go up to?
- The alleyway.

4225. Was it along the alleyway that you saw the people going?
- Yes.

4226. Were they passengers?
- Yes.

Mackay
10684. Did you feel the shock?
- Yes.

10685. Was it severe?
- No, not too severe.

10686. You just noticed it. What did you do when you felt it? Did you come out into the alleyway?
- Yes.

10687. You are speaking now of the alleyway on E deck?
- The ship's working alleyway.

10688. On E deck?
- Yes.

10689. Did you meet anyone there?
- I met quite a crowd.

10690. Were you told something about what had happened?
- No, we were told nothing.

10691. What did you do next?
- The first order I heard was from the second Steward to close all watertight doors on F deck.

10692. To close the watertight doors on F deck?
- That was the first order I heard given.

10693. How long after the accident was it you heard that order?
- A matter of about a quarter of an hour.

Mr. A. H. WEIKMAN:

I certify that my occupation on the Titanic was known as the saloon barber. I was sitting in my barber shop on Sunday night, April 14, 1912, at 11.40 p. m., when the collision occurred. I went forward to the steerage on G deck and saw one of the baggage-masters, and he told me that water was coming in in the baggage room on the deck below. I think the baggageman's name was Bessant. I then went upstairs and met Mr. Andrews, the "builder," and he was giving instructions to get the steerage passengers "on deck." I proceeded along E deck to my room on C deck. I went on the main deck and saw some ice laying there. Orders were given, "All hands to man the lifeboats, also to put on lifebelts." Who gave the orders? "Mr. Dodd, second steward."

I helped to launch the boats, and there seemed to be a shortage of women. When I was on "E" deck I met the captain returning from "G" deck, who had been there with Mr. Andrews, and the captain was on the bridge at that time.

It seems that after reporter from the carpenter, captain went below to see what was going on. When he understood that the situation is bad, he decided to evacuate 3rd class passenger whose spaces were most exposed to flooding.
A moment later everyone who was in the Scotland Road could have seen a crowd of 3rd class passengers going aft.
 

Thomas C.

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This area of the sinking is in fact the area in which I have been focusing the largest part of my research on for the last couple of years. When I first joined this forum I was writing a book called 11:40, which was to focus on this first hour, it was about 500pgs. long -though in rough draft form. I mentioned this in my post here Possible setback of clocks before collision (post 42 July 13, 2016)
I also want to write a long article or a book, but for now it remains only in my plans for the future. I have been dealing with this topic for a long time, but it was only at the beginning of summer that I gathered to combine the testimonies into a single story.

George Jacub showed us that this story may have a different course and if I do not agree with him in 100% , he showed as many things that still need to be understood.

I'm willing to cooperate, if you like, at any time.
 

B-rad

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Indeed there are a lot of unknowns. :) Hopefully by tomorrow I can actually sit down and hash somethings out. (Haven't been ignoring). I feel like I've been making excuses on this site, but besides general comments I haven't been able to do much research wise.
 

George Jacub

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Thomas, I'm not sure what point you were trying to make with the recitation of the Robinson/Wheat/Mackay testimony. There's no question that Capt. Smith went below deck to the engine room and the mail room and was seen there about 12:15 a.m. But he went down only after giving orders to call up the deck crew, putting them to work clearing the lifeboats, rousing the off-duty officers to supervise, sending a distress message, sending a revised location worked up by Boxhall, ordering the lifeboats lowered level with A deck and the loading of passengers.

Note how your own witness Wheat supports that narrative: He heard a strange noise and in trying to find its source he spoke with night watchman Johnson; he went to see the flooding of the post office that Johnson told him about (10 to 15 minutes after the collision), then--on his own initiative---went to close watertight doors on F deck; he closed one alone and a second with the help of Dodd; he said it took six minutes close the doors, bringing the time to roughly 12:01 a.m. at the outside. Then while going to D deck he heard McElroy give the order for the stewards to get the passengers up on deck with lifebelts. That order came a around midnight by Wheat's estimation. McElroy wasn't calling up a thousand passengers on his own sayso; he had to be following the Captain's orders. And that order had to have been given by the Captain BEFORE he went below decks. So his trip below was not the "inspection" he told the wireless operators he was having done.
 

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