The damge done by James Cameron's 1995 expedition: why was he not sued?


RHeld

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Mar 27, 2012
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In 1996, RMS Titanic Inc. arrived at the wreck site to attempt to raise "the big piece." During a dive by the Nautile in which ocean liner scholar Charles Haas took part in, it was discovered James Cameron's 1995 filming visit did the following damage:

-Wrenching off the Marconi Room skylight.
-Tearing down the outer bulkhead of E.J. Smith's cabin.
-Attempting to descend into the Grand Staircase with a whole Mir, which resulted in pieces of the prop and related materials spewed all over the place when the Mir failed to fit.

Incredibly, all RMS Titanic Inc. did was ask -and were granted- that access to the wreck be restricted to only their expeditions. They did not sue James Cameron over the damage. Why?
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>They did not sue James Cameron over the damage. Why? <<

You might want to ask that question of a lawyer, but it helps to know that RMSTI was the salvor-in-possession. They do NOT own the wreck.

Short version: They MIGHT not have had the legal standing to sue.
 

James Smith

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Dec 5, 2001
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Also, it would be hard to go after Cameron without also going after his Russian pilots, whom RMSTI might need if they ever plan to go back to the wreck.
 

RHeld

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Also, it would be hard to go after Cameron without also going after his Russian pilots, whom RMSTI might need if they ever plan to go back to the wreck.

That is true if it were now. But in 1996 RMS Titanic Inc. and IFERMER were in a good partnership. They had easy access to the Nautile and would not have had to worry about needing the Mir mini subs.
 
Mar 18, 2008
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If we are honest and look about all data we can see that from the beginning with the discovery in 1985 there was always something. In 1985 (yes Ballard!) the Argus collide with the wreck and had some cable brought up, in 1991 during the IMAX filming one of the Mir collide with the hull in 1995 (Cameron) debris from the Mir was found on the wreck etc....
It can be worse, look at the Lusitania! The most shame was that they not only cut off the propellers but melted one to make golf sticks/club out of it! (And were was the big protest there????)
 

Adam Went

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Apr 28, 2003
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I doubt that any of the damage caused was deliberate and some of it might well have been contributed to by the natural decay of the ship; Cameron did and does have the best interests of the ship at heart. So could he be sued over something that was accidental? Would he personally even be liable or would it come back to somebody else?

Cheers,
Adam.
 

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