If any what kind damage occured to the ships double bottom


Sep 22, 2003
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If any, what kind damage occurred to the ships double bottom? Was it simply Torn Open? or was it a series of holes punched here and there? or some buckled plates? or some other way? and besides that would the interior of the double bottom also be damaged and if so how?
 

Erik Wood

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I don't think that anybody knows, there is a lot of speculation but I don't know that there is any direct evidence that sheds light.
 

Carl Ireton

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I've read that not only did she strike a glancing blow to the iceberg, that she possibly 'ran aground' temporarily, which of course, could have opened punctures into her double bottom. Carl Ireton
 
Jul 9, 2000
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Carl, what your referring to is known these days as an "Allision" which defines a ship bottoming out on something without coming to a stop. The grounding/allision theory was first made public by David Brown in Last Log of the Titanic 5 years ago, even though both he and Parks Stephenson came to much the same conclusions independantly. Both this gentlemen collaborated to write a white paper on the subject which was presented to the Marine Forensics Panal and which you can read for yourself at https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/item/1511/
 
Mar 22, 2003
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If it were a pure grounding with damage confined to just the double bottom the ship would not have sunk. The double bottom was designed to protect against grounding on a flat bottom. It extended from as far forward as the forepeak tank and to within 20 ft of the aftpeak tank. However, in the compartments ahead of the boiler rooms and aft of the engine rooms, the double bottom was not extended up around the bilge. The iceberg spur that did most of the damage must not have been a flat shelf but a somewhat sloping shelf which caused damaged the the hull plates on the starboard side of the ship as well as the outer plates of the double bottom allowing massive flooding into the cargo holds.
 
Feb 13, 2003
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Michael H. Standart Posted on Saturday, December 17, 2005 - 3:49 pm:

quote:

Carl, what your referring to is known these days as an "Allision" which defines a ship bottoming out on something without coming to a stop

The correct definition of "Allision" is: Law. the striking of one ship by another.​
 

Paul Rogers

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"The correct definition of "Allision" is: Law. the striking of one ship by another."

Mmm.. according to this Maritime Terms website, 'allision' is defined as: "The act of striking or collision of a moving vessel against a stationary object".
 
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Two definitions for the same word. Nothing new there so I won't sweat it.
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Feb 13, 2003
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quote:

Mmm.. according to this Maritime Terms website, 'allision' is defined as: "The act of striking or collision of a moving vessel against a stationary object".

Maritime Terms website definition is ambiguous; therefore, unreliable as a source of information.

(a) If a moving vessel strikes another moving vessel is it an allision or a collision?

(b) If a moving vessel strikes a moored vessel is it an allision or a collision?

(c) If a moving vessel strikes an iceberg, that is not aground, is it an allision or a collision?​
 

Paul Rogers

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I guess any ambiguity perceived depends on how one would define the word: 'object' (and, possibly, the word 'stationary'). Personally, and based on the context of the definition quoted, I wouldn't include any vessel - moored or underway - within the definition of the word 'object'. (I would however class a submerged or semi-submerged wreck as an 'object'.) But then I'm not a seaman so I'll bow to your judgement on this one.

FWIW, my answers to your questions - based on my above comments - would be as follows:

(a) Collision
(b) Collision
(c) Allision



PS: Did I pass? ;-)
 
Mar 22, 2003
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According to this site: http://www.m-i-link.com/dictionary/default.asp

allision -- striking of a moving vessel against a stationary vessel that is at anchor, aground, etc. or fixed object such as piers, wharves, etc.

collision -- striking of two vessels that are in motion.

But is a drifting iceberg considered a fixed object? It certainly is not a vessel and not really fixed. However, with reference to the water most people would say it is practically a fixed object moving with the water, not through it. My understanding is that the term "allision" is commonly used in place of "collision" to distinguish that one of the objects was fixed.

So to answer your questions Capt. Collins, I would say the answers are:

a) collision
b) allision
c) allision

On a related note, I think the term used most often with regard to the Titanic accident was "struck," as in "she struck an iceberg."

Any maritime lawyers out there?
 

Paul Rogers

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On a related note, I think the term used most often with regard to the Titanic accident was "struck," as in "she struck an iceberg."

Hello Sam. I seem to recall it being discussed on this Board that, in 1912 (and later?), the verb 'strike' was used specifically to describe a grounding event. Didn't David Brown and Parks Stephenson suggest that the use of that particular word in testimony supported their grounding theory?
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>Maritime Terms website definition is ambiguous; therefore, unreliable as a source of information. <<

Don't know about that, Duke. I thought that "The act of striking or collision of a moving vessel against a stationary object". was clear cut and to the point. Perhaps unsatisfactory since it can be a simplistic term to describe a very complex event or sequence of events, but hardly unreliable. For our purposes, it works, so I won't split hairs.

But if you want to, have fun with it. It's a minor point in this context so I won't quibble.
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>>But is a drifting iceberg considered a fixed object? <<

I think that for all practical purposes, it can be. While the berg was in motion with the current, it wasn't exactly moving at warp speed.
 
Mar 22, 2003
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I must agree with you Michael. Movement as we all know is relative anyway.

David, with all due respect, I know you have claimed that the term "struck" was used to describe a grounding event. But was that the only meaning of that term? Wasn't that term also used to describe a collision as well as an allision event? In other words, any form of unexpected contact with an object or another vessel?

From the log book of the Olympic on 20 Sep 1911:
quote:

12.46 [p.m.] Struck on starboard quarter by His Majesty's ship.
 
Oct 28, 2000
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No word is ever used in precisely the same way by every person every time it is uttered. There isn't one of us who has always used every word in exactly it's most precise meaning within the context of every sentence.

We are all aware that English has two too many to's. Many words that sound alike and are even spelled alike have completely different meanings which can only be figured out within the context of the sentence. I could argue that the verb "struck" in the Olympic log is not the same word that we are discussing.

"Struck" or "strike" had a specific meaning to sailors of the era and that meaning was specific enough to make it into nautical dictionaries. The very nature of Titanic's accident was a "striking" under this accepted definition of the word as used the majority of times by the majority of sailors in 1912. That makes both the use of the word by Titanic's surviving crew and the number of times they used it significant.

The log entry you cite has one major difference from Titanic's accident: two ships. Quite obviously, any definition of "strike" relative to Titanic must be in the context of only one vessel being involved. And, that removes from possibility any other potential meaning of "strike" in a nautical sense. The berg cannot in any sense of the word--nautical or otherwise--have struck Titanic. Therefore, the accepted nautical use of "strike" in 1912 must be considered the most proper use of the word in context with Titanic.

I can find supporting evidence for the use of "strike" in the correct nautical sense in all sorts of works ranging from sea chanties to classic novels. It was quite well known that single ships often "struck" on the bottom, causing damage and flooding in the same manner and locations as Titanic's accident.

Quite simply, you cannot understand historical documents without an sense of the way language was used both in context of the sentences and context of the times and experiences of the people who used the language. In 1912, a one-ship accident causing damage to the bottom was a "striking." This specific use of the word in a 1912 nautical context gives the correct sense of what the crew involved were describing.

What the passengers meant when they used "strike" is something quite different. For that use of the word you have to look to the lubberly use in context with the era.

To sailors, however, Titanic "struck."

-- David G. Brown
 
Mar 22, 2003
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I think you will have to prove to us that the term "struck" meant only a grounding. If the ship would have struck a pier what would they have called it? If the ship would have struck another vessel that was at anchor what would they have called it? If the ship struck an iceberg along its side (not on the bottom) what would they have called it? Can you cite a reference for that era that shows that this term was used to mean just a grounding event?
 

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