The following excerpts are taken from the IMM/WSL book of rules and regulations dated July 1st, 1907. The particular book copied was the property of J. Bruce Ismay and now in the documents pertaining to the Limitation of Liability hearings.
-- David G. Brown
101. – Commanders must distinctly understand that the issue of these regulations does not in any way relieve them from the responsibility for the safe and efficient navigation of their respective vessels, and they are also enjoined to remember that they must run no risk which might by any possibility resut in accident to their ship. It is to be hoped that they will ever bear in mind that the safety of the lives and property intrusted to their care is the ruling principle that should govern them in the navigation of their vessels and that no supposed gaining of expedition, or saving of time on the voyage is to be purchased at the risk of accidents.... No precaution which insures safe navigation is to be considered excessive.
114. Night orders. – The Commander is to enter in ink in the Night Order Book the course to be steered, and all other necessary instructions, particularly as to being called in case of need, or doubt on the part of the Bridge Officer. The book is to be kept by the Officer in charge of the Watch, who will in turn pass it on to his relief, each Officer initially for his Watch.
The ship’s position is to be worked up every evening at 8 p.m. and entered in the night order book.
117. Sea Watches. – Regular sea watches must be kept from the time the ship leaves the port of departure until she reaches the port of arrival. The watches are to be equally divided and the ship is never to be left without and Officer in charge of the bridge. When the Officer of the watch believes the ship to be running into danger it is his duty to act at once on his own responsibility, at the same time he is immediately to pass word for the Commander. The Chief, First and Second Officers are never to give up charge of the bridge during their respective watches unless with the express permission of the Commander. When the Watch is relieved the Officer in charge of the watch going off duty is to be responsible that the correct course is passed with the helmsman relieving. This should be done in the presence of the Officer relieving, who is to satisfy hemself that it is being steered. The thre Seniors are the Bridge Officers, and divide the time into three watches of four hours’ duration, each will have four hours on the ridge in charge of the ship, followed by eight hours below. The Junior Officers, when five or more Officers are borne, will keep watch and watch with the seamen, the Third Officer having charge of the starboard watch, and the Fourth Officer the starboard watch, under the direction of the Senior Officer on watch. They are also to go the rounds every hour during watch on deck, reporting having carried this out to the Senior Officer on watch.
Senior Officers’s Watches: –
Chief Officer ... 2 a.m. to 6 a.m. and 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Second Officer... 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
First Officer ... 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.
The First Officer relieving for Breakfast.
The Second Officer relieving for Lunch
No dinner relief needed.
Junior Officers’ Watches: –
Midnight to 4 a.m.
4 a.m. to 8 a.m.
8 a.m. to Noon
Noon to 4 p.m.
4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
8 p.m. to Midnight.
Junior officers are not to have charge of a watch at sea except during dayling in fine weather at the discretion of the Commander.
201. Duties – (a) The Chief officer is Executive Officer of the ship; he is responsible for the cleanliness and discipline throughout. He shall have the decks washed down and as dry as possible by 8 .m., paint and brass-work cleaned, and Decks in thorough order. No work that may cause discomfot to Passenger is to be done on Passenger Decks after 8 a.m.
He will take charge of a Watch, and in port will have general superintendence of the ship.
(b) He must make himself thoroughly acquainted witht he Rules and Regulations of the Company, and will be held responsible for any infringement of same by any junior Officer or member of the Deck Department.
(c) He must pay particular attention to the Laws regulating Passenger Streamships, Rules of the Road, Steam Whistles, Signals, etc., etc.
(d) He will have strict attention paid to the moorings, gangways, etc. He will see that the proper Night Watch is set and kept.
(e) He will pay strict attention to the holds, and if unable to make a personal inspection of each hold he will depute other Officers to do so, and will obtain from each Officer a written report of the condition of his hold. He will also have the Steam Fire Annihilators tried each voyage by the Officer of the hold, accompanied by an Engineer and the Carpenter; the hold report to include examination of ports, roses, wells, bilges, scuppers, etc.
202. Responsibility. – The Chief Officer is held jointly responsible with the Commander for the safe and proper navigation of the steamer, and it shall be his duty to make a respectful representation to the Commander if he apprehends danger, when his responsibility shall cease. Any neglect in this respect will not be excused.
203. Inspection. – He will have the ship ready for inspection at the designated hour, and everything is expected to be clean and in thoroughly good order.
204. Stores, Repairs and Alterations. – He must not allow any expenditure of stores in his department without an order signed by himself, and all requisitions for stores in his department must bear his signature. All ordinary requisitions for improvements in, repairs to, and supplies for the Deck Department must be handed immediately on arrival to the Marine Superintendent. These requisitions must contai no requrests for any alterations or new work to any part of the structure of the ship; all such requisitions or suggestions must be submitted in a letter from the Commander to the Management, with reasons therefor. Replacing necessary articles, old and worn out, by new, are repairs.
205. Inspection of Boats. – he is required to personally inspect the boats once a week, cause the covers to be removed, the boats washed, tackle and equipment overhauled, and otherwise satisfy himself that they are in every respect complet, in perfect working order, and ready for immediate use in case of emergency, with water breakers and biscuit locker full, the water sweet and the biscuits sound.
206. Evening Inspection. – at 8-0 p.m.the Chief Officer or Senior Officer of the Watch when relieved, will make an ispection of the ship, satisfy himself that the Fire Gear is ready for use, Sluice Valves shut, Fire Detectors in order, Emergency Boasts clear and ready for lowering, that the proper arrangements are made for closing any Side Ports that may be open on the cattle decks when necessary, and will report the same to the Commander as soon as possible afterwards.
207. Stewards Repair List At Sea
208. Deck Men
209. Oiling Steering Gear
210. Refrigeratoed Cargo Compartments
211. Stations On Sailing Day
214. Attending at American Counsul’s Office
215. Ship’s Log-book. – He must be particular in keeping the ship’s Log, and write it up carefully every day, giving the Officer of the Deck positive instructions to make a note of everything tht is of importance on the Log Slate so tht the log may conform to the requirements of the Company. All damage done to the ship, however small, to be entered in the Log-book.
216. Authentication of Entries in Log-book. – The log-book, when completed by the Chief Officer, is to be initialed by the Officers of each Watch, and the book each day submitted to the Commander for inspection and signature.
217. Alteration in Log-book Forbidden. – A leaf is never to be removed or closed up in the Log-book, nor any erasure made under any circumstances; all errors must be cancelled out by ruling an ink line through them, with initials attached.
218 Delivering Log-book at End of Voyage. – At the end of the voyage the Log-book must be delivered to the Marine Superintendedt, signed by the Commander and Chief Officer.