RMS TITANIC vs QUEEN MARY 2 BATTLE BETWEEN GIANTS


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John Knight

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>>" My point is That Titanic did not need those safety features to be a safe ship. It wasn't supposed to strike a berg. It was only in the small possibility of it happening. It did not need those features to be a seaworthy craft.<<

Maybe legally she didn't, but in actual fact, she did. That's why changes were made to law and to designs.
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>Maybe legally she didn't, but in actual fact, she did.<<

Unfortunately, that's not as set in stone as some of us might want to think. Most of the legal and design changes made fall into the catagory of "kneejerk reactions." This is the sort of thing that lawmakers, regulatory authorities, and other agencies do to make it look like they're "doing something" and they only work out if the assumptions and conclusions they're based on are correct. We don't know with 100% non-debatable certainlty that this applies to Titanic, and we probably never will.

There are plenty of issues at work here ranging from flawed design concepts to the exact nature and extant of the damage, the latter of which is not entirely knowable. However, none of it would have mattered were it not for some really ill-advised navigation practices that are at the core of the why the accident occured in the first place.
 

John Knight

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My point is that despite the legal requirements of the time, the event proved that the ship could have been better designed and equipped. So, with hindsight maybe, the fact is she was not as seaworthy as could have been desired.
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>My point is that despite the legal requirements of the time, the event proved that the ship could have been better designed and equipped.<<

Anything can be better designed and equipped. This particular event didn't "prove" it per se, just drove this point home in a way that's difficult to ignor. It never would have been an issue in the first place had they steered a course well south of the icefield as just about everybody else had done.

The biggest, the best, the most well equipped vessel in the world can be sent to the bottom by human error and the Titanic was.

I woud also, while I'm at it, take issue with the premise that the Titanic was somehow not as seaworthy as could have been desired. Lifeboat provisioning notwithstanding, would you care to name passenger vessels anywhere that have watertight sectioning and protection that equals much less is superior to that of ny Olympic class liner?

You may be unpleasantly surprised at the answer.
 

John Knight

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When anyone decides to use anything man made for whatever purpose, we all hope that it will do the job properly. In the case of the Titanic that she should reach her destination safely whatever she may encounter on the way. Of course it is not possible, at least not yet, to make anything that is infallible. But none the less it is the desire I would think, of most people that all that could be done to prevent loss of life or effects has been done before they use, in this case, the Titanic to travel on. Sometimes the belief is, even of the owners, that all has been done.
Then a disaster occurs and the opposite is proved if only in part. If other ships were or were not better sub-divided I have no idea but it does not mean the Titanic could not have been better designed using the technology then available. An example of this was the almost immediate doubling of some ships hulls to extend higher up the side of the vessel.
So until a ship can be designed that does not sink all we can ask is that a vessel is built using all the possible safety devices without having to wait for disaster. It is this that I would think is the desire of any traveller.
Regards,
John.
 
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>>If other ships were or were not better sub-divided I have no idea <<

By and large, they're not with the notable exception of warships which must be able to survive quite a bit of damage. An Olympic class liner was designed to remain afloat with up to four of it's watertight sections flooded. As far as I know, you won't find a single cruise ship/liner which can meet that standard today. For obvious reasons, shipping lines aren't keen to advertise this fact.

>>but it does not mean the Titanic could not have been better designed using the technology then available.<<

Quite right, they could have been. However, this is far from a gaurantee. Britannic had all of those features you described and sank in less then an hour after striking a mine. The Lusitania had sectioning that would have done any military vessel proud and sank in only 18 minutes. It doesn't help that a lot of the safety features they had weren't even used. The Britannic had portholes open which should have been closed as well as watertight doors which have been found still open going into the engineering spaces.

>>So until a ship can be designed that does not sink all we can ask is that a vessel is built using all the possible safety devices without having to wait for disaster. It is this that I would think is the desire of any traveller.<<

A noble idea in theory, not quite so do-able in practice. Passengers like ships with all the amenities, all the luxuries, and above all, which are easy to get around in even for those with signifigent disablities. Unfortunately, this clashes badly with building ships that have the maximum in subdivision. Such vessels are very difficult to get around in for any but the able-bodied. An unacceptable situation on a passenger vessel where potential travellers vote with their wallets and their feet in favour of the more comfortable vessel.

There are other problems too, not the least of which revolves around crew training and maintainance. Simply put, the crew of a merchent vessel seldom has the sort of time needed to devote to the labour intensive work involved in keeping every single fitting up to snuff, much less the time to train to set everything properly. A military vessel trains in this sort of thing as a matter of routine in their workup cycle prior to deployment and it takes an average of at least a year for them to learn how to do it right. (I'm a retired Navyman...been there done that!)

Seen in this light, it becomes apparant that putting in every conceivable bell and whistle can be and is seen to be more trouble then it's worth, and when you get down to the very bottom line, there is no substitute for good seamanship.

Never has been and never will be.
 

Noel F. Jones

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".... would you care to name passenger vessels anywhere that have watertight sectioning and protection that equals much less is superior to that of ny Olympic class liner?"

Without wishing to detract in any way from the point you are making, as a matter of record we should accord exception to Lusitania/Mauretania with their longitudinal augment of subdivision.

Noel
 
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>>as a matter of record we should accord exception to Lusitania/Mauretania with their longitudinal augment of subdivision.<<

I agree, and perhaps I should have clearified in pointing to modern day vessels. In any event, these features didn't do the Lusitania much good, did they? Unfortunately, that speaks more to the point I was making about how even the best safety features are useless unless they're actually used and properly cared for. The Bailey and Ryan book on the Lusitania makes for some interesting reading in this regard.
 
Aug 8, 2004
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The Lusitania wasn't designed to withstand a torpedo inflicted breach. The point is that it didn't need to be. It should never have been torpedoed. The Titanic shouldn't have struck an iceberg either.
 
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>>The Lusitania wasn't designed to withstand a torpedo inflicted breach.<<

As a matter of fact, to a point she was. She and her sister, the RMS Mauritania, were designed to be rapidly converted to armed auxilary merchent cruisers in time of war and their watertight subdivision was at least was a partial reflection of that. Unfortunately, as I pointed out, it ain't no good if you don't use what you have or can't keep it up properly.

As to whether or not she should have been torpedoed, that's probably best discussed in one of the Lusitania threads. I can tell you however that had I been a sub driver, I'd have taken the shot.
 
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The question here regarding the Lusi is whether or not she could have withstood a similar encounter with an iceberg collision along a 300 feet length of her starboard side and underbottom going at her full speed of 26 knots? This would have compromised all her forward compartments as far back into BR #2. And because of the bunker arrangement on the sides of the vessel in the BR areas, one needs to take into account the loss of transverse stability that would also result.
 
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Yeah I understand that the Lusitania was able to be used by the British military forces in times of war. Now that I think about it, the damage caused by the torpedo probably wasn't that extreme. She probably would have survived it. Ballard said that the residual coal dust kicked up by the explosion caused a secondary, more powerful explosion and thats what doomed the ship.
 
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>>Ballard said that the residual coal dust kicked up by the explosion caused a secondary, more powerful explosion and thats what doomed the ship.<<

The odds are that Dr. Ballard is mistaken on this point. Coal dust needs some very specific conditions of dryness and density/dispersion which didn't exist on the Lusitania. The bunkers where the coal was stored would have been wet with condensate due to the conditions on the North Atlantic which would have prevented such an explosion. The best evidence would tend to indicate that the boilers were ruptured in the region of the explosion, which would explain the cloud of coal dust and steam that was seen at the point of the explosion.

I wouldn't say that the torpedo's damage wasn't extreme in some sense. These things carry some fairly sizable warheads. Even the reletively small charges used in contemporary warheads would have been enough to blow large holes through the shell plating and any inner bulkheads as well as anything else in the way. Since some of the things in the way included boilers with...so I'm given to understand...operating pressures of 195psi, God help anyone in the way if even one of these things is blown open.
 

Brent Holt

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Gross Registered Tonnage is NOT weight. It measures enclosed space. Each ton represents 100 cubic feet of space. The QM2 does not "weigh" 150,000 tons.
Comparing ships built 100 years apart is like comparing apples to oranges.
 
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