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Pat Shingleton: "Analysis of the Sinking"

7 months 2 weeks 6 days ago April 14, 2016 Apr 14, 2016 Thursday, April 14 2016 April 14, 2016 5:38 PM in Pat Shingleton Column
By: Pat Shingleton

Weatherwise magazine research noted that weather patterns in the winter and early spring of 1911-1912 were to blame for the demise of the RMS Titanic at 11:40 PM. Changes in atmospheric pressure at sea level caused strong north winds that propelled the icebergs farther south than normal, placing them into the Titanic’s course. Iceberg season in the north Atlantic is April through July where more than 80 percent of the total number of icebergs cross south of latitude 48 north. In April, 1912, more than 900 icebergs floated in the North Atlantic.Other ships plying the waters of the North Atlantic, over a two month period, reported an unusually high number of icebergs in the shipping lanes, the same lanes through which the Titanic sailed. Approximately 700 passengers and crew who survived the disaster, testified that sea conditions resembled a placid lake on an unusually calm yet cold night as the role of weather was never considered in the ship's investigation. In 1912, weather technology was in its infancy as scientists began understanding the dynamics behind the weather. Ocean liners did not have radar, sonar or infrared imaging systems and relied on human lookouts, positioned in the crow’s nest, high above the decks. To locate an iceberg at night, lookouts watched for water breaking around their bases. On the fateful night, Second Officer Charles Lightoller noted that the ability to see icebergs decreased with no breakwater around their bases. Lookout officers, Reginald Lee and Frederick Fleet failed to see the iceberg that the Titanic struck until after it tore apart the hull. The Almanac of The Infamous, The Incredible, and Ignored noted that on April 14, 1912, before the Titanic hit an iceberg, Rev. Charles Morgan of Winnipeg fell into a fitful sleep filled with frantic voices and crashing waves. He heard the hymn, “For Those in Peril on the Sea.” Morgan shared his nightmare with his congregation, leading them in singing the hymn. News of the disaster reached Winnipeg the next morning.  On April 14, 1935, William Reeves, a lookout on a steamer from England to Canada, sensed danger, realizing it was the anniversary of the Titanic disaster, 23 years earlier. Sounding the alarm, the ship stopped, surrounded by ice bergs. The name of the ship was the “Titanian.”

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