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Deadly Design - RMS Titanic

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News about the number of lives lost broke on 16th April 1912, one day after the disaster. Grieving relatives of the victims were desperate to know how the impossible could have happened. The Titanic was designed to be the most luxurious, but also the safest ship ever built, even if she were rammed by another ship, she would stay afloat. Yet she took only two hours to sink after colliding with an iceberg.

Two weeks later a public inquiry was setup to find out if the disaster could have been avoided, and if anyone was responsible for the loss of 1,523 lives. The chief council for the British government was the celebrated barrister Sir Rupert Issacs. The key witness was Joseph Bruce Ismay, the 50 year old chairman at White Star Line, the owner of Titanic, and one of the few men that survived the maiden voyage. Also called were wireless operator Harold Bride, and second officer Charles Lightoller, the most senior officer to survive. As most of the crew had died in the disaster, these three mens testimony would be vital in deciding whether the ships crew or the ships owners had been negligent.

Two years before the scheduled launch date, Ismay had met with his chief designer Alexander Carlisle, it was meeting that would start the chain of events that would lead to disaster. Their first decision would compromise the structural integrity of the ship.

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