Titanic: 100 Years: Final Thoughts

Titanic’s Lifeboats in New York Harbor

After leaving the site of the sinking of the Titanic, the Carpathia carried the 705 survivors to New York. They arrived on April 18, 1912. Immediately following their return, an inquiry was held in the United States.  The US Inquiry lasted from April 19 – May 25.  At the same time, a British Inquiry into the sinking was held from May 2 – July 3.  It was determined that the ship was traveling too quickly, ignored several important ice warnings, and was not carrying enough lifeboats for the passengers and crew.  White Star Line owner, Bruce Ismay, was criticized for being among the survivors of the sinking.  It was also determined that the Californian was in the area of the sinking, but the wireless operator had gone to bed after being told to “Shut-up” by the wireless operators on the Titanic.

The loss of life was 1,517.  The fact that the ship did not carry an adequate number of lifeboats for all on board was to blame. There are a number of other contributing factors including: weak steel, calm sea, lack of moon light, the loss of the lookouts’ binoculars, the water-tight bulkheads only extending to E-Deck, and the lack of lifeboats. The important thing to understand, however, with all these weaknesses, the ship met every safety standard of the day. The sinking of the Titanic led to the creation of the Ice Patrol and changes in passenger liner regulations.  The Titanic disaster is the greatest ever recorded in peace time and could have been prevented had the regulations for passenger liners been tougher.

Today, the Titanic is resting on the ocean floor, slowly decomposing. The site is a grave site and should be left alone. Dr. Robert Ballard has repeatedly presented his arguments for leaving the Titanic alone, and I could not agree more. It is a sacred site and should be left alone. RMS Titanic, Inc. has opened the Titanic to salvagers and I refuse to visit any of their sponsored events or exhibits. Leave the wreck alone and allow those who parished on that April night rest in peace.


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