The date was April 14th, 1912. The location was a calm and flat Atlantic Ocean. The air was cold and windless. The time was approaching midnight. The ship was the RMS Titanic, one of the largest and most luxurious ocean liners ever built. The lookout was Frederick Fleet and his furtive words to be forever remembered were, “Iceberg, Right ahead!”
The Titanic could not avoid a collision with the forbidding iceberg that had been spotted too late… First Officer William McMaster Murdoch looked on, horrified, from the helm of the majestic vessel.
The iceberg had gouged a two hundred foot rupture along the great ship’s side. Five of the ship’s water compartments were open and filled with water. The Titanic broke in half as the front of the ship was flooded with water resulting in irrevocable consequences. The hours that followed these events were an unthinkable nightmare for those aboard this vessel. The ship carried 2,223 passengers and crew. Out of that number, 1,500 souls were lost in the icy waters of the North Atlantic as the noble lady nodded to the ocean floor. Most of the 700 survivors were women and children.
The ‘unsinkable’ Titanic sank to its final resting place in the dark, frigid ocean depths at 2:00 am on April 15th, 1912. She lies today in the Atlantic Ocean at 41 degrees 46′ North 50 degrees, 14′ West and 12,500 feet down into the murky depths.
The ship, spanning 883 feet from stern to bow, with 15 ‘watertight’ compartments, was designed by the Irish shipbuilder William Pirrie. Ironically, as grandiose as the Titanic was, a severe ‘oversight’ of emergency procedure directives coupled with the shortage of lifeboats were at a large blame for the loss of lives.
If any positive impact resulted from the sinking of the Titanic, it would undoubtedly be the furtherance of safety regulations implementation for large sea vessels.
(Four days prior to sinking, the ship had departed from Southampton, England, on its maiden voyage across the Atlantic Ocean with full speed ahead.
The Titanic was destined for New York City, NY, USA.)
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