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In 1912, the R.M.S. Titanic set out on its doomed maiden voyage from Southampton, England, to New York City. The ship that many said was unsinkable hit an iceberg late in the evening on 14 April and sunk in the early hours of 15 April. There's so much more to know, and it's some seriously fascinating stuff.

These resources will connect you to more information about the Titanic, and how that particular tragedy unfolded. As will the Titanic Facts article we have for you on this page.

Titanic Facts

by Cathy Richey

Size, weight, speed

  • Length: 882 feet 9 inches.
  • Beam: 92 feet.
  • Gross tonnage: 46,328 tons.
  • Top speed : 23 knots.

Propulsion

  • Two wing propellers, 23.5 feet diameter (7 m) and 38 tons.
  • Center propeller, 16.5 feet diameter (5 m) and 22 tons.

Engines

  • Two triple-expansion reciprocating steam engines.
  • One low-pressure Parsons turbine.
  • 25 double-ended Scotch-type boilers.
  • 4 single-ended Scotch-type boilers.
  • 159 coal burning furnaces (coal was shoveled in by hand).

More interesting facts about the Titanic

  • The Titanic cost $7.5 million dollars to construct.
  • The Titanic had 2 sisters: The Britannic and The Olympic.
  • Titanic's maiden voyage began on April 7, 1912. She made two stops before proceeding west to New York.
  • There were three classes first, second, and third.
  • The Grand Staircase was located on the first class level.
  • The Titanic offered an on-board swimming pool, a gymnasium, a Turkish bath, libraries in both the first and second-class, and a squash court.
  • First class common rooms were adorned with elaborate wood paneling, expensive furniture and other decorations.
  • The cost of a ticket in first class was $4,350 dollars. In todays money that would probably cost around $50,000 dollars.

Occupants (pre-sinking)

  • Total number on board: 2,201 people.
  • Passengers: 1,316 passengers.
  • Crew: 885.
  • Thirteen couples on board were celebrating their honeymoon.

How it went down (so to speak)

On the fateful night of April 14, a collision with an iceberg ripped open six of the water tight compartments. The iceberg scraped the starboard (right) side, buckling the hull in several places and popping out rivets below the waterline over a length of 300 ft. Many believe if the ship would have collided with the iceberg head-on, the damage wouldn't have been quite so severe. Titanic sank at 0220 on 15 April, breaking in two as she went down.

The human toll

  • About 1500 passengers and crew members died.
  • Of the 951 male passengers, 805 died.

Saved

  • Total saved: About 700 people, mostly women and children.
  • Two dogs on board were also saved.
  • Survivors were rescued by the steamship Carpathia, which had been 58 miles away when it received the distress signal.

Safety equipment

Titanic carried 20 lifeboats, enough for 1178 people. One of the factors that makes the sinking of the Titanic so memorable is the fact that lives were needlessly lost. There were not enough lifeboats on board to hold all the passengers and crew in the first place.

But making matters worse, what few boats there were got launched before being filled to capacity. Why? The crew was untrained in deployment, and there had been no drills with the passengers.

Titanic carried 3500 lifebelts and 48 life rings, useless in the icy water. The majority of passengers that went into the sea did not drown, but froze to death. A scene in the 1997 movie illustrates this particularly well. The traveling Titanic exhibit makes this fact very clear, partly through letting you feel a surface chilled to the temperature of that sea water. Brr.

Several experts who have examined the wreckage have said they think the ship may have sunk because of structural damage in some of the ship's most basic parts: the rivets. They found that several metal bolts were structurally weak.

After the tragedy.....

The Titanic disaster led to the convening of the first "International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea" (SOLAS) in London. On 30 January, 1914, delegates signed a treaty that resulted in the formation and international funding of the International Ice Patrol, which is is an agency of the United States Coast Guard.  Even today, the IIP monitors and reports on the location of North Atlantic Ocean icebergs that could pose a threat to transatlantic sea lane traffic

Conference delegates also agreed to new regulations that stipulated:

  • All passenger vessels would have sufficient lifeboats for everyone onboard
  • Appropriate safety drills would be conducted
  • Radio communications on passenger ships would be operated all day along with a secondary power supply, so as not to miss distress calls.
  • The firing of red rockets from a ship must be interpreted as a distress signal (red rockets launched from the Titanic prior to sinking were mistaken by nearby vessels as celebratory fireworks, delaying rescue).

So, there you have it. A snapshot of interesting facts about the Titanic.

Editor's note: It's interesting that the USA economy has been sinking in a similar fashion, but the iceberg in this case has been the tens of trillions of dollars wasted by Congress, evaporated by several scandals, debased by the central bank, and outright stolen via several federal bailouts and the "too big to fail" (jail) scam. That much burden can sink any economy, and that's exactly what it's doing. It's not the weak rivets, it's the weak voters giving in to the same old promises that never get fulfilled by the Demopublicans/Republicrats; in 2008, about 97% of voters fell for this ruse.

 

About the author: Cathy and her Doberman Trooper conduct research into all kinds of topics and produce articles like the one you see here. To contact Cathy, write to thecathyfactor@yahoo.com. Get the facts from Cathy, and let the Cathy Factor give you an edge.

 

 

 

 


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