Sinking of Titanic

Deafening Silence- RMS Titanic Hits an Iceberg

It was not the collision but the silence when Titanic’s engines were stopped which alerted those passengers still awake to the fact that something was amiss.  A sudden panic did not break out, probably because passengers felt they were in a floating town on a calm sea on a starry night. But the ship was holed and down below, the sea was pouring in and boiler rooms were under threat.
Before long, telegraphs were ringing, watertight doors were coming down, the firemen and engineers were struggling to keep the steam pressure up, the pumps working and the lights lit. Captain Smith sent for Thomas Andrews who went below to inspect the damage. His verdict was as chilling as the night around them. The ship could not keep afloat for more than a couple of hours.
  • View video footage of what survivors of the Titanic saw on the night of the disaster

A Grave Situation- The Sinking of RMS Titanic

Time passed before passengers realised the seriousness of the situation and their holiday appearance  - dressed in pyjamas or kimonos, tuxedos or evening gowns, or carpet slippers – added to the unreality of the scene, “like a play that was being enacted for entertainment,” as one survivor recalled. But it became deadly serious when the lifeboats were lowered, filled with women and children, or half-filled, as investigation later proved, and sometimes with men instead of women.


There was later evidence of panic on board and of some incompetence among the crew. Meanwhile, wireless messages of distress were sent out repeatedly from the Marconi shack, CQD, the general distress call and then the newly adopted SOS (Save Our Souls).  They make poignant reading. The messages went on from a quarter past midnight, April 15th until 2.17.a.m. when Virginian heard Titanic call CQD and replied, but apparently to thin air. At 1.40a.m. Olympic had messaged from 500 miles away: “Am lighting up all possible boilers as fast as can”. But it was too late. Those in the lifeboats watched the ship tip and tilt, hang vertical and motionless for several minutes, her immense stern upright against the sky, then slide under until she vanished. Titanic foundered at 2.20a.m.


Watch our video on Titanic Survivor, Violet Jessup- click here for video



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User Comments 54

How many gallons did it take to sink?
Bailee Hogue 25 February 2013
how did office lowe warn passengers to stop running for the lifeboats
someone 13 January 2013
I don't know why, but I've been obsessed with TITANIC all my life!!
Colleen 28 September 2012
A very remarkable eyewitness account! She has the right to pas judgement on those who arrogantly built the ship without an adequate number of lifeboats, making the outrageous claim that the ship was unsinkable!
Bill Drayton 11 September 2012
I love the titanic
liam 13 July 2012
I heard that some of the rivets were made of steel and some of iron. They had some type of machine to put the steel rivets in. Where the machine could not reach, iron rivets were inserted by hand. After being in the salty waters it weakened those rivets. When the ship hit the iceburg...which incidently was from 10,000 yr old ice...and it's hull skid along the iceburg, those iron rivets just popped.
Jamie 20 December 2011
I have read many stories about the Titanic, but I believe that the ship named Titanic wasn't the Titanic I believe it was her sister ship renamed Titanic, the reason for this is as follows. I read a book about the Titanic and in this book there were facts and information that gave detailed information about the accident with the sister ship and a military ship which was later found to be the sister ships responsibility so therefore the White Line ship company would not be able to make an insurance claim costing the company lots of money for a repair job they couldn't afford. I believe what they did so that they could make a claim was to decide to sink the ship out at sea and pass it off as an accident to the cost of many lives, so what I believe they did was this: there are many witnesses who worked on both ships who said the name of both ships was changed and many of the things inside the sister ship were made to look like the Titanic and the Titanic was made to look like the sister ship, I believe the workers were told to keep quiet about what they were doing, and I believe that was why there was a delay in the Titanic being launched so that they could make the changes to both ships. Think about it, the ship company were going to lose a lot of money or may have gone under so they had to do something to get the insurance money. All the facts in this book stand out on their own, that this was nothing but an insurance scam from the start with no regard to all those people who went to their deaths. I think it is a disgrace that only the rich were allowed to get off the ship, so if you want to blame anyone then blame the ship company. The people on that ship were just following orders, just like you or I when we are at work we are told what to do and we do it. It was the same for all the workers on that ship. Even the captain was following orders from above, and if he hadn't he would have lost his job and most likely would never have got another job on a ship for not following orders. Back then if you didn't have a job you couldn't eat and that would mean you would die of starvation. I bet if the records could be found you would see that an insurance claim was made some time later and it was paid out to the company, so now they had the money they nearly lost and still had the Titanic which was renamed with her sisters name, along with the model plate and number of the ship just simply removed from one ship to the other. Who would notice as both ships looked alike from outside? The people travelling on the ship wouldn't notice the difference in the ship because it was the first time they had been on it, the only people who would have noticed would have been the workers who fitted out both ships and the bosses. The workers' statements about the changes to both ships and that they believed that it wasn't the Titanic that sunk, that it was the sister ship, if you want to read a book it is called 'Titanic The Ship That Never Sank' by Robin Gardiner. Check it out and see if you come to the same conclusion that I came to, that it was a insurance scam. It makes sense to me.
Julie 18 December 2011
Whatever or whoever was to blame, the only good thing I thought to come out of this tragedy, was that every ship at sea was required to carry enough lifeboats to get the crew and people off a sinking ship.It also highlighted the disgraceful actions of some of the upper class,sneering down at those less fortunate, who could not afford a lavish lifestyle. They were treated with contempt. Granted, not everybody behaved this way. Regardless of their background some did help, but nothing's really changed. If you have good money, you get better treatment. The only other good thing to emerge was that charities were set up to help those less fortunate or who lost everything and badly needed the help.
David 27 September 2011
One just has to be baffled by all the comments about what my ancestor, Thomas Andrews did. How do any of you know what his actions or reactions were on this fateful night, when not even one member of our family has any facts. Other than he had argued with Ismail over having the ship run at full-speed on its maiden voyage? And the well known fact that he was at least a man, (unlike Ismail, who made it off the ship, one way or another), and went down with the great ship he had designed. Also, please address him properly, as he had been knighted. Therefore: he should be referred to as 'Sir Thomas Andrews'. Thank you. RIP to all whom lost their lives on this horrendous night.

PS. Ismail is the person who deserves the most blame for ordering Captain Smith to go full-speed ahead on a clear night with iceberg sightings. Then Captain Smith for following them. These two things are fact.
Michael Pirie-Cooper 29 August 2011
And to answer Lynn Collins' question: 705 survived the disaster. There is one survivor left, I believe.
steve 29 August 2011
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