Hi Julian,Hi Mila,
Captain Rostron repeated first seeing a green flare at 2.40am in the USA and British Inquiries, in his report to the Cunard Line, and in other accounts at the time, and in his memoirs printed in 1931. Second Officer Bissett also repeated the 2.40am time in his memoirs in 1959.
Dave Gittins has suggested that the 2 hours 40 minutes was simply the time the first green flare was seen into Carpathia's run towards the CQD position. This fits very neatly. If you look at Captain Rostron's USA Inquiry testimony he was quite vague about certain matters and had not brought any papers or logs with him. Once the mistake was made there was little point in correcting what was probably at the time a minor detail.
We also know that Captain Rostron was reluctant to correct his 4th June 1912 affidavit in respect of certain controversial details. I expect he took the view that what had happened had happened, and these details were semantics given the huge tragedy and loss of life.
You've read Bisset's memoir, don't you? I know he said that the first glare at (2:40) was high and when they actually reached the boats at 4 the flare was low at the water. He even speculated that the first flare (or flares) were actually "a pyrotechnic rocket", which flies much higher. So I'd like to ask you please if you remember if Bisset or Rostron specified how many these high flares they saw before starting seeing low flares? I mean what this high first one the only one before 3:20 something?