The Gangway Door on D-Deck


Hey folks, been a long while since I've had the moments to check in,and and very happy to have found so much new information to sift through.

I do have one question with respect to the models we have re the foundering; How much effect would the gangway doors being open have on the flooding and final condition of Titanic? As per M. Lightoller's testimony in New York;

"Mr. LIGHTOLLER. Earlier, and before I realized that there was any danger, I told off the boatswain to take some men - I didn't say how many, leaving the man to use his own judgment, to go down below and open the gangway doors in order that some boats could come alongside and be filled to their utmost capacity. He complied with the order,

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and, so far as I know, went down below, and I did not see him afterwards. That took away a number of men, and we detailed two men for each boat and two men for lowering down."
- extracted from US Inquiry

And second,somewhat unrelated, was there a door from the passageways within the fourth funnel to the outside world? And if so, where was it located?
 

Arun Vajpey

Member
I have read that the gangway door on D-deck (starboard side?) was opened sometime after the collision to assist passenger loading into lifeboats, but never used. So does that mean it was left open and later forgotten about in the general confusion? If so, how much would that large opening contributed to accelerated flooding of the Titanic in terms of time after the sea reached the lip of the doorway?
 

Charles

Member
It was the door on the port side and this was open very late in the sinking. Lifeboat No. 6 passed that door when lowered and no one ever mentioned it!
No much effect on the sinking.

Yea it looked kinda weird... The realistic real time Honor and Glory sinking though cleared it though.
 

Robby House

Member
Was it opened "late in the sinking?" My research shows that the port side D-Deck gangway door was opened to assist Lifeboat 6 as it descended down the falls to the sea. Lifeboat 6 was reportedly the 2nd boat to make contact with the sea on that side of the ship which, relatively speaking was early on. There were still 6 regular lifeboats to be lowered as well as the two port side collapsible boats. (No. 8 was the 1st portside boat launched then 4 which was lowered to A Deck where it remained for a while eventually watching No. 6 actually become the 2nd boat to make it down before resuming being lowered just beating No. 2 lifeboat to the water.) To my knowledge no survivor testimony exists from the survivors of No. 6 recording having received help from crew members working from the Gangway door so if there was a problem from earlier it had gotten resolved by the time they passed the doorway. It's likely that when No. 6 Lifeboat became level with the D-Deck Gangway door there was still several feet, maybe even a couple yards from the door and sea level. Such uneventfulness could have been a factor behind the lack of anything noteworthy mentioned about the door during the sinking.

The portside D-Deck Gangway door opening has long interested my curiosity as to how it contributed to Titanic's foundering. Many seem to discount any significance the opening contributed to the flooding on board. I've always figured that with the original damage to Titanic's hull calculated at around 12 square feet, surely the ingress of water this doorway would eventually allow inside could easily match that if not surpass it!

Ingress into the port side from this location could also help to explain how the ship eventually erases it's starboard list and develop[s a pronounced list to port before sinking.


It was the door on the port side and this was open very late in the sinking. Lifeboat No. 6 passed that door when lowered and no one ever mentioned it!
No much effect on the sinking.
 
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Arun Vajpey

Member
The portside D-Deck Gangway door opening has long interested my curiosity as to how it contributed to Titanic's foundering. Many seem to discount any significance the opening contributed to the flooding on board. I've always figured that with the original damage to Titanic's hull calculated at around 12 square feet, surely the ingress of water this doorway would eventually allow inside could easily match that if not surpass it!
I have thought on the same lines. I am not certain at what time that door was opened but from what I have read I thought that it might be around 01:00 am, which is not 'very late'. As regards the effect the open door had on the sinking, I am certain that the original ice damage was more than enough to cause the Titanic to sink anyway and the gangway door would have made no difference in that eventuality. But what I'd be interested in knowing is whether the sudden increase in the rate of flooding through that door played any part in the time the ship took to sink; in other words by what time factor, if any, did that open gangway door accelerate the sinking process?

Most people seem to dismiss the role that open door could have played but I am not totally convinced.
 
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Was it opened "late in the sinking?" My research shows that the port side D-Deck gangway door was opened to assist Lifeboat 6 as it descended down the falls to the sea.
To my knowledge no survivor testimony exists from the survivors of No. 6 recording having received help from crew members working from the Gangway door so if there was a problem from earlier it had gotten resolved by the time they passed the doorway. It's likely that when No. 6 Lifeboat became level with the D-Deck Gangway door there was still several feet, maybe even a couple yards from the door and sea level.


If that was the case then no one in No. 6 ever mentioned it?No orders to Hichens and Fleet about stopping on D Deck, no orders to the crew lowering the boat to stop it there, no one in the boat every mentioned a open door or any order.
Lightoller was clear that the order he gave was to open the E Deck Gangway door forward on the port side.

Lifeboat 6 was reportedly the 2nd boat to make contact with the sea on that side of the ship which, relatively speaking was early on. There were still 6 regular lifeboats to be lowered as well as the two port side collapsible boats. (No. 8 was the 1st portside boat launched then 4 which was lowered to A Deck where it remained for a while eventually watching No. 6 actually become the 2nd boat to make it down before resuming being lowered just beating No. 2 lifeboat to the water.)

Boat No. 4 was planned to be the first one to be loaded and launched. It was lowered to A Deck but it could not be loaded from there as the windows were still closed.
No. 6 was loaded and launched as the first one on the port side (I do not see how boat No. 8 was loaded and lowered before No. 6. No. 6 was lowered while the ship had a list to starboard, No. 8 with a list to port).


The port side D-Deck Gangway door opening has long interested my curiosity as to how it contributed to Titanic's foundering.

No much effect. The water inside was about level when the door was at water lever. (There were no pressure differences.)


Ingress into the port side from this location could also help to explain how the ship eventually erases it's starboard list and develop[s a pronounced list to port before sinking.

The list to port had been already present before the water ever reached the open door.
 

Charles

Member
did that open gangway door accelerate the sinking process?

Since the Titanic had already taken a port list before as Ioannis said, the port list would've been effected, but yes, much more water would've entered in the ship at an angle.

this was open very late in the sinking. Lifeboat No. 6 passed that door when lowered and no one ever mentioned it

It is true that there are no survivors to mention the D Deck Entry open, but Lightoller also didn't mean the E Deck door either. He said he simply wanted any Gangway door opened. So maybe after checking E Deck, the Boatswain probably headed aft for the D Deck doors, which probably also gave away. By the time the D Deck door wouldve been opened, it was probably 1:25
 
It is true that there are no survivors to mention the D Deck Entry open, but Lightoller also didn't mean the E Deck door either. He said he simply wanted any Gangway door opened.

Lightoller was speaking about E Deck.

13902. About where you are pointing now? - Yes, there are two doors one above and one below on the starboard side, but there is only one on E deck on the port side. The other gangway doors are here.
13903. In the afterpart? - Yes.
13903a. What deck do those gangway doors open from? - E deck.
13904. Were your orders general, or did they refer to one set of gangway doors in particular? - General.
13907. If the boat was down by the head, the opening of those doors on E deck in the forward part of the ship would open her very close to the water, would it not? - Yes.
13908. When you gave the order, had you got in mind that the ship was tending to go down by the head, or had not you yet noticed it? - I cannot say that I had noticed it particularly.
13909. Of course, you know now the water was rising up to E deck? - Yes, of course it was.
13916. (The Solicitor-General.) As a matter of accuracy, is that open on to the floor of E deck or d deck? - E deck.
13917. (Sir Robert Finlay.) I am told there is also a gangway on D deck forward? - On the starboard side.

I do not give much what he wrote in his biography years later however there he mentioned "and open the port lower-deck gangway door, which was abreast of No. 2 hatch.”
 

Charles

Member
I should've researched that up before about his Inquiry testimony- but here's this


*NEW THEORY


At around 12:40 AM, the water line outside was almost under E Deck. Inside, water is trickling through the very front stairwell near the bostwick gate at the front. Boatswain Alfred Nichols and his seamen open the door, not knowing that the door is partially submerged. Water wades in and steerage passengers around panic and race up Scotland road on the other side, which is beginning to flood because of the water. Seaman John Poingdestre notices that the wall in his cabin collapses and he rushes out of the cabin to go back up.
Boatswain Alfred Nichols and the other seamen attempt to close the door but cannot due to the force of water that happened to come in. The first few lifeboats (7 to 6) leave as the water becomes up to the group's waist. They wade through the water to port as the port list becomes noticeable and as boat 8 leaves. At about the same time, Lead Fireman Fredrick Barrett gets into Scotland Road as Boiler Room 5 is engulfed.
As Nichols and the seamen group begin up Scotland road, the water comes up their shoulders and paddle until they reach the grand staircase on E Deck. The water is shallow here since the water is trickling down to F Deck.

-The end is probably a little after 1:30 AM, about the time the name on the bow was submerged and the forward well deck was flooding. As the boatswain was on D Deck Reception on the port side, he and the seamen must've been out of breath, and once they got their breath back, opened the door, and retreated out of the sight of Lightoller

This may be to over dramatic, but it's the only theory to explain why they were never seen again and the E Deck AND D Deck door was opened.
 
Nichols was reported by other survivors (I think Barrett mentioned him in a newspaper interview at the Boat Deck when he got into No. 13 on A Deck). There are reports of ABs working on the last collapsible so it is very unlikely "they were never seen again". I think it is like the same myth that the engineers and stokers died at their post (Scott saw about 8 of the engineers on deck and Dillon mentioned Bell himself too).

The E Deck door was most likely never opened. I have not seen any evidence which speak for it that it was open. By the time Nichols and his men went on E Deck, there was already water there. Lightoller stated he send them down when he was working at boat No. 6.

13906. (The Solicitor-General.) Yes. (To the witness.) Can you help us when it was that you gave this order to the boatswain? I mean, can you give it us by reference to boats. Was it before you had lowered No. 4 to the a deck or after? - I think it was after and whilst I was working at No. 6 boat.

That was after the order to fill the boats was given. Poingdestre had the experience with the flooding of his room much earlier as when he returned on deck he heard the order given to fill the boats.

2874. Where did you go to then? - I was going up on to the boat deck to go towards my own boat, and I heard the Captain pass the remark, "Start putting the women and children in the boats," and then I went to my boat, No. 12.
 

Arun Vajpey

Member
It depends on how many survivors other than Lightoller heard when ( and if) the Second Officer gave the order to "Big Neck" Nicholls and his men to go and open the D-Deck gangway door. Can the comments that "they were never seen again" actually mean that Lightoller never saw them again? Lightoller pretty much remained on the forward port side of the boat deck and perhaps did not venture below B-deck afterwards. If that was the case, it is possible that he did not notice that Nichols and the others were back on the boat decks but others, like Barrett, did. If they were helping out elsewhere, Lightoller might have missed them in the general confusion and later assumed that they were lost in the vicinity of the D-door gangway door.
 

Charles

Member
Lightoller stated he send them down when he was working at boat No. 6.

Okay, so that means that this scenario happened at about 1:10 AM, which makes more sense now.

Can the comments that "they were never seen again" actually mean that Lightoller never saw them again?

Thats exactly what I was thinking.

this was open very late in the sinking

I know I am late on quoting your post, but if it was so late, then who opened the door? Also, the water would've reached the door by 1:40


I just realized that Dorothy Gibson saw water on the F Deck landing of the Grand Staircase on her way up. She got off in Lifeboat 7.

I dont have a theory any more.... :p
 
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