Sea travel is safer today than at any point in history. But still, how worried should we be? Could a Titanic-like disaster happen today? Before we can answer our main question, we need to know what led to the sinking of the Titanic becoming one of the worst maritime disasters in history.
Everyone knows the basic story: the ship hit an iceberg and there weren’t enough lifeboats. The first big issue contributing to the ship’s demise had to do with the culture of early twentieth-century ocean liners. The captains of these ships were under constant pressure to keep a tight schedule of arrivals and departures. Additionally, it was widely believed that icebergs didn’t pose any significant danger to ships.
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The main problems facing the Titanic on that fateful night 1:14
Ice patrols 4:22
How icebergs are detected these days 4:44
Costa Concordia disaster 6:41
If the Titanic had struck the iceberg today 8:43
#titanic #CostaConcordia #brightside
– At the time, it was common for ship’s radio operators to work for a third-party company. Relaying messages to the crew was the second priority to sending private telegrams for the passengers.
– Additionally, it was widely believed that icebergs didn’t pose any significant danger to ships.
– The lack of lifeboats was also due to a misunderstanding of how any potential collisions would play out, and not just because they would be redundant on an invincible ship.
– No one had ever anticipated the need to evacuate everyone on-board onto lifeboats.
– By 1912, ships weren’t yet required to have someone operating the radio 24/7.
– Making matters worse was the fact that the Titanic’s radio operator reported the wrong coordinates in his SOS. This meant that even the ships that received the call had trouble finding where the Titanic had gone down.
– After the Titanic sank, many new procedures were established with the hope of preventing similar disasters.
– One of the first was the establishment of regular ice patrols in that region of the North Atlantic.
– Another reason today is better than a century ago is that our iceberg detection has gotten a lot more sophisticated.
– Accidents can still happen, so it’s a good thing large vessels are now required to carry enough lifeboats for everyone aboard, and the crews receive training in proper evacuation procedures.
– Modern ships are also required to have a radio operator on duty at all times.
– A good example might be what happened during the 2012 Costa Concordia disaster.
– The Italian cruise ship was passing close to the island of Giglio when it collided with the edge of an underwater plateau.
– It was later revealed that there were numerous distractions on the ship, such as the presence of the Captain’s girlfriend.
– Unlike the Titanic, the Concordia had more than enough lifeboats to get everyone off safely.
– If the Titanic had struck the iceberg today, the Coast Guard would’ve deployed a small fleet of boats and helicopters to assist in the evacuation.
– With a competent commander overseeing an organized evacuation, this modern Titanic might not be considered a disaster at all.
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