The bulkhead between boiler rooms #5 and #4


Arun Vajpey

Member
Apr 21, 2009
1,400
324
218
64
I understand that there are some informative interior photographs of the relatively intact bow section of the Titanic wreck. Is there one showing the watertight bulkhead between boiler rooms #5 and #4? If so, what shape is it in and can they tell whether it 'failed' just after 02:15 am leading to sudden flooding of rest of boiler room #4?
 
Mar 18, 2008
2,384
710
248
Germany
I understand that there are some informative interior photographs of the relatively intact bow section of the Titanic wreck. Is there one showing the watertight bulkhead between boiler rooms #5 and #4? If so, what shape is it in and can they tell whether it 'failed' just after 02:15 am leading to sudden flooding of rest of boiler room #4?
No wreck pictures. And not failure of the bulkhead. From what I understand that was a theory set out by Charles Pellegrino.
 

Arun Vajpey

Member
Apr 21, 2009
1,400
324
218
64
Thank you. I am assuming that the above replies indicate that the said bulkhead did not fail. In that case, was there any sort of "catastrophic event" at around 02:18 that led to the sudden acceleration of sinking and break-up of the ship or was it just that the progressive flooding within the Titanic reached a point where the ship "lost its longitudinal stability and started to tip over" as so well described in Sam Halpern's book?
 

B-rad

Member
Jul 1, 2015
512
128
108
38
Tacoma, WA
From what I understand, the increased sinking rate, happened for no special reason. Once water found its way to the top most of Titanic's structure, the water had unlimited access to the ship; where before the water would have to continue rising inside the hull to reach the top, now it could flood upwards, while also flood downwards.

The water inside the hull would be at level with the water inside the hull, therefore, until the hull is submerged, the hull still has some buoyancy. Once the water reaches over the structure, air is more rapidly displaced, and buoyancy is more rapidly lost.

To pull a Jim (with all do respect btw), you can try this at home with a shallow pan (or tupperware) in a sink or tube, full of water(at least a depth where pan can sink). Slowly fill pan with water, and the pan will sink lower, until the lip of the pan goes below the waterline, and then the pan sinks rapidly.

The break up did not have anything to do with the initial rapid flooding. In fact, the break up seems to have had the opposite effect on the stern section, as it righted itself, when otherwise it would have probably tipped over and sank with the rest of the hull. The break up was caused by the ship sinking to an angle the structure could not handle. This angle was achieved by the more rapid flooding. Where most ships tip over before such angle Titanic did not.
 

Arun Vajpey

Member
Apr 21, 2009
1,400
324
218
64
The break up did not have anything to do with the initial rapid flooding. In fact, the break up seems to have had the opposite effect on the stern section, as it righted itself, when otherwise it would have probably tipped over and sank with the rest of the hull. The break up was caused by the ship sinking to an angle the structure could not handle. This angle was achieved by the more rapid flooding. Where most ships tip over before such angle Titanic did not.
That's right. From what I understood from Sam Halpern's account, the sequence of flooding had nothing to do with the break-up. The break was caused by the excessive "bending movement" strain on the hull as the stern rose out of the water and sharply lost its buoyancy. With the latter event, the bending strain on the hull would have increased sharply and reached its maximum somewhere between a trim angle of 11 and 14 degrees as depicted by the graph in page 119 of Halpern's book. It was at this point - starting about a minute or so after the ship had lost its longitudinal stability and had started to take the final plunge - that the break-up occurred. If the Titanic had not broken-up when it did, it might not have done so at all because at trim angles over 15 degrees the bending strain starts to decline and drops sharply after 20 degrees to reach zero at 90 degrees (or if the ship had become vertical), again as depicted in that graph.

The fact that the stern then settled back and took a further 90 to 120 seconds to flood and sink itself makes room for an interesting speculation. If the Titanic had lost its longitudinal stability (and so started its final plunge) exactly when it did but had not broken-up, it might have disappeared a minute or more sooner than it did.
 

Rusty_S

Member
Mar 28, 2012
108
4
73
The only failure for that area would not be the bulkhead itself but the actual coal bunker door. From all the research I have crossed over the years there is good evidence that the bunker was closed to slow the water ingress enough that the pumps could stay ahead of it. Once the bunker filled up with enough water the heat damage to said bunker from the coal bunker fire and the pressure of the water caused the door to eventually fail which from the perspective of those in the boiler room would have seemed like a bulkhead collapsed and not just a closed coal bunker door failing.
 
Mar 18, 2008
2,384
710
248
Germany
The only failure for that area would not be the bulkhead itself but the actual coal bunker door. From all the research I have crossed over the years there is good evidence that the bunker was closed to slow the water ingress enough that the pumps could stay ahead of it.
It is the wrong boiler room, this topic is about the WTB F between BR. 5 & BR 4. The one you are referring to is WTB E between BR 6 & BR 5.

Once the bunker filled up with enough water the heat damage to said bunker from the coal bunker fire and the pressure of the water caused the door to eventually fail which from the perspective of those in the boiler room would have seemed like a bulkhead collapsed and not just a closed coal bunker door failing.
No one described a bulkhead collapse and it is very unlikely anyone would have survived such an event to report it.
 

Rusty_S

Member
Mar 28, 2012
108
4
73
It is the wrong boiler room, this topic is about the WTB F between BR. 5 & BR 4. The one you are referring to is WTB E between BR 6 & BR 5.



No one described a bulkhead collapse and it is very unlikely anyone would have survived such an event to report it.
As far as the boiler room goes, maybe its wrong, been a good 5 or 10 years since I really read or researched Titanic due to lack of new information.

I have to disagree, been years but when I read the inquiry transcripts Stoker Barret was in the boiler room when a wall of water came in and he escaped up an escape ladder. I cant recall from the transcripts but in the history channel episode from the mid 90s they talked about this but said that a stoker stepped in a open manhole and broke his leg and Stoker Barret left him when the water came in. I don't recall that in the transcripts but I do recall him saying that a wall of water came in and he left when that happened.
 
Mar 18, 2008
2,384
710
248
Germany
It was Engineer Shepherd who broke his leg and Barrett helped to bring him into the pump room.
Some time later Barrett saw water coming though the pass between the boilers and was called to go up. He did not say that the bulkhead collapsed.
 

Rusty_S

Member
Mar 28, 2012
108
4
73
I did not say that he claimed the bulkhead collapsed but that he saw a lot of water coming through all at once. This is where the bulkhead collapse came in from is cause it was never stated but the only thing people could comprehend as causing a huge torrent of water coming in all at once is if something like a bulkhead failed.
 

Harland Duzen

Member
Jan 14, 2017
1,576
624
188
It was Engineer Shepherd who broke his leg and Barrett helped to bring him into the pump room.
Some time later Barrett saw water coming though the pass between the boilers and was called to go up. He did not say that the bulkhead collapsed.
I found a newspaper report somewhere (either that or from the inquiry) that said Shepherd was moved into boiler room 4. is it possible Barrett didn't know this happened and that Shepherd didn't drown when the bulkhead gave way?
 

B-rad

Member
Jul 1, 2015
512
128
108
38
Tacoma, WA
I found a newspaper report somewhere (either that or from the inquiry) that said Shepherd was moved into boiler room 4. is it possible Barrett didn't know this happened and that Shepherd didn't drown when the bulkhead gave way?
Your probably thinking of fireman's Threlfall's account:

Leading Stoker Threlfall states that after the collision his stokehold, No. 4, was dry. “The fires were burning as usual.” The watertight doors were closed, but they were opened to bring through an engineer with a broken leg, and were closed after him again. Nos. 1, 2, and 3 stokeholds were also dry. Up to shortly before 2 a.m. “everything was going on just as usual below; the lights were burning and all pumps were working as if nothing had happened.”

This link may help. Me and Ioannis have had a discussion about this.

Time for flooding of Boiler room #3, 2, 1 and engine room
 
Mar 18, 2008
2,384
710
248
Germany
Yes it was Threlfall's newspaper account. Interestingly in his newspaper interview (as in The Sphere) Barrett mentioned that preparations were done to bring Shepherd on deck.
(That Shepherd died in BR 5 is the interpretation in A Night to Remember. Barrett did now saw anything, he was ordered on deck.)
 
A

Aaron_2016

Guest
Reading Charlotte Collyer's account about 2nd class. Does anyone know how this stoker injured his hand? She said:


"There was a commotion near one of the gangways, and we saw a stoker come climbing up from below. He stopped a few feet away from us. All the fingers of one hand had been cut off. Blood was running from the stumps and blood was splattered over his face and over his clothes. The red marks showed very clearly against the coal dust with which he was covered..........I saw First Officer Murdoch place guards by the gangways to prevent others like the wounded stoker from coming on deck. How many unhappy men were shut off in that way from their one chance of safety I do not know; but Mr. Murdoch was probably right. He was a masterful man, astoundingly brave and cool. I had met him the day before, when he was inspecting the second-cabin quarters, and thought him a bulldog of a man who would not be afraid of anything. This proved to be true; he kept order to the last, and died at his post. They say he shot himself. I do not know."


.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Harland Duzen

Member
Jan 14, 2017
1,576
624
188
Reading Charlotte Collyer's account about 2nd class. Does anyone know how this stoker injured his hand? She said:


"There was a commotion near one of the gangways, and we saw a stoker come climbing up from below. He stopped a few feet away from us. All the fingers of one hand had been cut off. Blood was running from the stumps and blood was splattered over his face and over his clothes. The red marks showed very clearly against the coal dust with which he was covered..........I saw First Officer Murdoch place guards by the gangways to prevent others like the wounded stoker from coming on deck. How many unhappy men were shut off in that way from their one chance of safety I do not know; but Mr. Murdoch was probably right. He was a masterful man, astoundingly brave and cool. I had met him the day before, when he was inspecting the second-cabin quarters, and thought him a bulldog of a man who would not be afraid of anything. This proved to be true; he kept order to the last, and died at his post. They say he shot himself. I do not know."


.
A bit Macabre but maybe a bulkhead door was the cause of it? If Barrett and Hesketh barely got though into Boiler Room 5 in time, maybe this stoker was just not fast enough.
 

Harland Duzen

Member
Jan 14, 2017
1,576
624
188
Yes it was Threlfall's newspaper account. Interestingly in his newspaper interview (as in The Sphere) Barrett mentioned that preparations were done to bring Shepherd on deck.
(That Shepherd died in BR 5 is the interpretation in A Night to Remember. Barrett did now saw anything, he was ordered on deck.)
Interesting. So contrary to belief, Shepherd never drowned in Boiler Room 6, and he could have been brought up on the boat deck?

(Note: As I heard ''A night to Remember'' is inaccurate, I never read the book)
 
Last edited:

B-rad

Member
Jul 1, 2015
512
128
108
38
Tacoma, WA
I am of the conclusion that Barrett made his way into boiler room 5, from 6, before he truly knew the full amount of the situation. Obviously, having your station become inundated with water would be a frightful experience. However, Barrett clearly states in his testimony that he made his way into boiler room 5, just after the damage was done, and before the watertight doors began to close.

US inquiry, “We got through before the doors broke, the doors dropped instantly automatically from the bridge.” During the British inquiry he would state, “Me and Mr. Hesketh jumped into this section, and the watertight compartment closed up.” When asked if he could tell the committee 'whether the rent ran right through No. 10 section', he would answer, “I did not stop to look; I jumped from that section when she struck.”

I agree with Ioannis, that Barrett also didn't probably didn't see anything of what happened in boiler room 5 once he got ordered up. As far a fight or flight reactions, I am under the impression that Barrett was more of the latter, though that says nothing against him, as I'm certain I would have been as well. (Hopefully, I will never have to find out!)
 

Harland Duzen

Member
Jan 14, 2017
1,576
624
188
Sorry, I was referring to the Bulkhead failure in Boiler Room 5 during the Sinking instead of during the collision but it's still good to know. perhaps one of Titanic's doctor's was called for to help bandage him up or he was later carried though to the engine room to help keep the ship running, or finally with her was carried onto the boat deck where he and others attempted to find a boat.
 
Dec 4, 2000
3,242
504
278
Just out of curiosity, why is some testimony of some survivors taken as gospel while the words of other eyewitnesses are ignored? Specifically, why is the following testimony of fireman George Beauchamp swept under the rug? Consider what he said during the London inquiry:

654 Were you on duty on Sunday, the 14th, when the ship struck?
Ans: Yes.

655 Where were you?
Ans: Eight to twelve watch.

656 Were you down below in the stokehold?
Ans: Yes

657 & 658 Which stokehold was it?
Ans: Number ten. The second one from the forward end.


Titanic’s six boiler rooms were divided into eleven stokeholds. A “stokehold” was the space at the face of the boiler furnaces where the stokers worked tending the fires. Boiler room #1 had only a single stokehold. Counting forward, boiler room #6 had stokehold ten at its after end and stokehold eleven at its forward end. Fireman Beauchamp correctly identified where he worked both by boiler room and stokehold. There is no reason to doubt that he knew where he was and what he was doing when the ship struck on the iceberg.


661a Did you notice the shock?
Ans: Yes, sir, I noticed the shock.

662 Was it a severe shock?
Ans: Just like thunder, the roar of thunder.

663 And immediately after the shock was any order given?
Ans: Yes.

664 What order?
Ans: to stand by, to stop. The telegraph went “stop.”

664a You got that order from the bridge, “Stop”?
Ans: Yes.

664b And were the engines stopped at once or not?
Ans: The telegraph rung off “Stop,” so I suppose they were.

665 Did the engineer in your section give you any order?
Ans: Yes, the engineer and the leading stoker shouted together – they said, “Shut the dampers.”

666 Did you8 shut the dampers.
Ans: yes, immediately; shut everything up.


Beauchamp order of events during and immediately following impact was fully supported by the testimony of his leading stoker. During the London inquiry Beauchamp’s leading stoker said, (q, 1856 to 1865) “I was in No. 10 stokehold. The starboard side. There is like a clock rigged up in the stokehold and a red light goes up when the ship is supposed to stop; a white light for full speed, and, I think it is a blue light for slow. This red light came up. I am the man in charge of the watch, and I called out, ‘Shut all dampers.’ To shut the wind off the fires.”

At this point we know that Beauchamp was in boiler room #6 working in stokehold ten. His leading stoker was standing virtually next to him. Both men agreed that the leading stoker ordered the dampers shut and Beauchamp complied with that order. But, Beauchamp had more work to do.


668e After the watertight doors were closed, was any order given to you with regard to the fires?
Ans: Yes. I could not say when – it was a few minutes afterwards; the order was given to draw fires.

669 A few minutes after what?
Ans: After the order was given to shut up, an order was given to draw fires. I could not say how many minutes, but the order was given to draw fires.

670 And did you obey that order?
Ans: Yes.

671 Did you see any water?
Ans: Water was coming in on the plates when we were drawing the fires.

672 What do you mean by “the plates”?
Ans: the plates of the stokehold where you stand.

672a You mean where the stokers were standing?
Ans: Yes.

673 What happened then?
Ans: The water was just coming above the plates then.

673a You mean it was coming through the floor?
Ans: Yes, coming through the bunker door and over the plates.

674 Through the bunker door?
Ans: Yes coming through the bunker like.

675 When you had drawn the fires what did you do next?
Ans: Waited till everything was shut down and an order was given. Someone shouted, ‘that will do,’ when everything was safe, when everything was shut down.

676 What did you do?
Ans: When the order was given someone shouted, ‘that will do’ and so I went to the escape ladder.


Beauchamp’s cogent testimony succinctly described the procedure for making a boiler “safe” by drawing out the fire from its furnace. It was not an easy procedure. Red-hot coals had to be raked onto the stoker plates and sluiced down with cold sea water. The work went with dispatch, but still took time.


678 Can you say how long it took to draw the fires?
Ans: I could not say how long it took, just the usual time. I could not say for certain.

679 What is the usual time? You have often done it, I suppose?
Ans: Yes, I have done it a good many times. Of course it all depends what you have got in the fires as a rule.

680 Can you say whether it took a few minutes or half an hour?
Ans: It took a quarter of an hour, I suppose.


Summing up what Beauchamp said, he was at the after end of boiler room #6 when the ship struck. He heard and felt the shock. Immediately, his leading stoker ordered the dampers shut and Beauchamp complied. A few minutes later word came to rake down the furnaces, a job that usually took 15 minutes or so. It was roughly 20 minutes after impact when Beauchamp went on deck via the escape ladder. At that time water was just coming up through the stoker plates and out of the bunker behind him. Clearly, Beauchamp and his leading stoker worked in a very slowly flooding boiler room #6. The did not escape from catastrophic flooding roaring through a major opening in the ship’s side.

Why are the testimonies of these two men ignored?

– David G. Brown
 

Similar threads