ENGLAND'S INDIGNATION AND GRIEF OVER THE " TITANIC "
E CONSTERNATION and mourning which reignthroughout the United States over the crushing disasteron the banks of Newfoundland have found a sympatheticresponse in the mother country. Such a catastrophe, asDisraeli said of the assassination of President Lincoln, "touchesthe heart of nations and appeals to the domestic sentiments of mankind." Amongthose who perished in the ice were peopleof cosmopolitan character and reputation.Their loss, as the London papers remind us,is a loss to civilized society.
The EveningStandard and St. James's Gazette
blamesreckless gambling on board the great linersas infecting officers as well as passengers,and inducing carelessness which spreadsfrom the saloon to the chart-room, and weread:"Reformers have declared that gamblingaboard the big liners is responsible for muchrecklessness. The traveling world has falleninto the delusion that every big ship is alife-boat
may have been unsinkable. Practically shewas not. The Board of Trade has had a rudeawakening from its dream of security."Joseph Conrad, the veteran author andmaster in the merchant service, writing in
(London), says that too muchis sacrificed in liners to speed and size, andrecommends the use of smaller vessels traveling in pairs. To quote his words:these days in theTheIt is"The impact of a liner of 45,000 tons incontact with a submerged iceberg is boundto prove fatal. This would be less likelyif the vessel were only of 20,000 tons displacement. Safety is sacriiiced to speedbuilding of mammoth ships."It is a question of size, not of the number of life-boatstrouble is there were too many people aboard the ship,absurd to say that a ship suchas the
is unsinkable.Such large boats necessarily endanger the lives of more passengers in proportion to smallervessels. The large boats are ableto hold more'passengers and crewin proportion to the smaller."As to the solution: I thinkthe increase in ocean travel andthe enormous number of personswho cross the ocean every yearwarrants the scheme of dispatching transatlantic liners across theocean in pairs. Instead of sending one boat of 40,000 tons, sendtwo boats of 20,000 tons each.Let them constantly be withineasy call of each other—say,about forty miles apart. Thusthey could keep in constanttouch by wireless, and shouldanything of a perilous naturearise, this would be an inestimable advantage."The big ship is a mistake except from a commercial viewpoint. I have sailed in ships foryears and know what strain andresponsibility is thrown on the
Copyrighted by Underwood & Underwood.LORD MERSEY,
Who will conduct the British inquiryinto the
disaster.commander of an Atlantic liner. Captain Flaherty, of the RedStar Line, told me once that, in the dead of night, while hestood on the bridge of his ship, he sighted a bark in close proximity to his vessel. He reversed engines, but was unable toavert disaster. The ship crashed into the bark, which crumbledlike matchwood. The captain told me that this experience soharrowed his mind (he had 1,100 sleepingpassengers on board), that when he arrivedin port, which happened to be New York,he resigned his post."The lives of travelers, across the oceanare certainly endangered at this time ofyear by steering a course so near driftingicebergs."But in the
case it occurs tome that had she been iifteen feet shortershe might have cleared the berg."
The Pall Mall Gazette
(London) urges onthe authorities the necessity for a searchinginquiry into the causes of the wreck, andobserves indignantly:"We have a duty to the living to perform. The public has been living in a fool'sparadise. What a ghastly mockery thephrase 'practically unsinkable' has become!We are unable to understand the argumentthat it is necessary to provide for part ofthe human freight and unnecessary to provide for the rest. It is a clinching proofof the Board of Trade's unfitness to supervise affairs of the sea."It is the naked truth that the great majority of our huge liners, rendered carelessby immunity from accident, drive acrossthe ocean with a mere handful of men whodeserve the name of sailor. Mr. Ismay hasdeclared that his company welcomes aninquiry."He will be taken at his word. Thereare searching questions regarding the designof the ship. Was the scantling sufficiently strong? Was thesystem of water-tight compartments adopted on the bestexpert advice or did other considerations overrule thecounsel of experts ? These are questions which must beanswered."
LUXURIES, OF MODERN TRAVEL
But not enough life-boats.•Montreal
It was criminal neglect, saysthe London
thatsent the helpless passengers tothe bottom, and it proceeds:"Twenty-six survivors, to forestall all sensational and exaggerated statements, made thisstatement—not exaggerated, butyet surely as well qualified tomake the blood run cold as anyinvention of the sensation-monger—' There were not enoughboats to save the people onboard.' ;"That for the moment isenough. Details after that donot matter. The fact comesfrom those who know. This isno false rumor, no lie. We haveto face it. Slowly, with infinitereproach, the whole world turnstoward those responsible andasks them why."There is no tone of vulgarrecrimination, no calling of namesand bringing up of useless bitter
In this gesture it is simply