Answered Lifeboat requirements on smaller ships pre-Titanic


David Clayton

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Feb 13, 2020
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Hi all. I have seen a lot of instances of quotes similar to this: “Board of Trade regulations require that ships over 10,000 tons have no fewer than 16 lifeboats.” I believe that the regulation in question is the Merchant Shipping Act 1894. So I want to know what the lifeboat requirements were for ships below 10,000 tons. Also, in my research, I have seen mention of a table of tonnage and lifeboats requirements. If anyone could link me this table, I would be very grateful. Thanks in advance.
 

Dave Gittins

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In around 2000 the British archives issued a CD full of Titanic material. Even if you can get one, it won' run properly on modern operating systems. There's another pile on CD from an outfit called Paperless Archives, but that has the same problem. I don't know of anything more modern.
 

Bob_Read

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I was able to run the Paperless Archive on Windows 7. I upgraded to Windows 10 and I just tried the discs and they open fine because they are just PDF files.
 
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Bob_Read

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Steve Christian: Microsoft is no longer supporting Windows 7. I bought Windows 10 and there was absolutely no installation instructions warning to back everything up. I had a fair amount of stuff backed up but I lost a lot of photos and all my programs. The one that made me mad was that I had an AutoCad drafting program that I still had the installation disc for and it reinstalled fine except for one problem. AutoDesk put a 30 day countdown clock on it where if you didn’t re-register the program you couldn’t use it anymore. So I tried to register it because I still had the serial number. Then I get a message from Autodesk saying they wouldn’t re-register it. So I was out of luck and I lost my drafting program. AutoDesk only sells their programs by subscription now but when I bought mine it was supposed to be a lifetime license until AutoDesk changed its mind. I will never purchase another Autodesk product. Little by little I’m trying to put my world back together.
 
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Nov 14, 2005
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Sorry about your auto cad problems. That sucks. I'm staying with Win 7. Tried Win 8 and 10. Can't stand them. So much so that I wiped the hard drive on my new laptop and installed 7. Windows Defender and Security essentials still update for it so thats all I care about. When its time I'll just go to Linux. Win 7 was the best O.S. Microsoft ever made. Maybe Win 11 will be better. Good luck with 10. Hope it works out better for you than it did for me.
 

Dave Gittins

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The trouble with the British archive CD is that the files can only be read by hunting about. When installed on Windows 95 the disc is quite easy to navigate.

By the way, the Paperless Archive CDs include j J Astor's science fiction novel.
 

Dave Gittins

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Before Titanic, many ships had "boats for all". These were cargo ships and passenger ships that didn't carry hordes of emigrants. After the sinking, the Australian government assured Australians that passenger ships on our coast had "boats for all". The real problem was the length of the ships. There is a real problem fitting many boats and it persists today. Cruise ship passengers wouldn't like to know the truth about the lifeboats on their floating blocks of flats.
 

Scott Mills

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Jul 10, 2008
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Well of course, and those 'boats for all' are conditional on a lot of things. Things like:

  • Does the foundering ship sink slowly enough that all the lifeboats can be launched? Despite the cry about there not being boats for all on Titanic, there was not enough time for all of her lifeboats to be properly launched;
  • The list of the sinking vessel, as too great of a list renders a full half of the lifeboats unlaunchable;
  • Sea states at the time of evacuation can render the launching of lifeboats very difficult indeed, then see point 1;
  • etc
 
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