Local Heart, Global Soul

May 19, 2018

A Titanic Effort Brings A Tragedy To Life…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

I am continuing documenting our visit to the LEGO exhibition in Te PaPa, Wellington, New Zealand in the last week of December 2017.

I often use Wikipedia for research in my posts, and it’s usual that I edit these to make the text fit the style and length of my posts. It’s less usual that I need to change anything at all though, and this is one of these times.

Wikipedia tells me: “RMS Titanic sank in the early morning of 15 April 1912 in the North Atlantic Ocean, four days into the ship’s maiden voyage from Southampton to New York City. The largest passenger liner in service at the time, Titanic had an estimated 2,224 people on board when she struck an iceberg at around 23:40 (ship’s time) on Sunday, 14 April 1912.

Her sinking two hours and forty minutes later at 02:20 (ship’s time; 05:18 GMT) on Monday, 15 April, resulted in the deaths of more than 1,500 people, which made it one of the deadliest peacetime maritime disasters in history.

Titanic received six warnings of sea ice on 14 April but was travelling near her maximum speed when her lookouts sighted the iceberg. Unable to turn quickly enough, the ship suffered a glancing blow that buckled her starboard side and opened five of her sixteen compartments to the sea.

Titanic had been designed to stay afloat with four of her forward compartments flooded but no more, and the crew soon realised that the ship would sink. They used distress flares and radio (wireless) messages to attract help as the passengers were put into lifeboats.

In accordance with existing practice, Titanic’s lifeboat system was designed to ferry passengers to nearby rescue vessels, not to hold everyone on board simultaneously; therefore, with the ship sinking rapidly and help still hours away, there was no safe refuge for many of the passengers and crew. Compounding this, poor management of the evacuation meant many boats were launched before they were completely full.

As a result, when Titanic sank, over a thousand passengers and crew were still on board. Almost all those who jumped or fell into the water either drowned or died within minutes due to the effects of cold water immersion.

RMS Carpathia arrived on the scene about an hour and a half after the sinking and rescued the last of the survivors by 09:15 on 15 April, some nine and a half hours after the collision. The disaster shocked the world and caused widespread outrage over the lack of lifeboats, lax regulations, and the unequal treatment of the three passenger classes during the evacuation. Subsequent inquiries recommended sweeping changes to maritime regulations, leading to the establishment in 1914 of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), which still governs maritime safety today.”

It’s not only the sheer size of this piece that is breath-taking, so is the attention to detail. Around most of the LEGO exhibits, loud babble of chatter and general noise pervaded. I noticed that people were distinctly more quiet around this one. I heard parents quietly explaining to their children that this model is based on true events, a lot of people just quietly looked. Of course there were also people exclaiming to others about one detail or another, but the reduction in noise around this piece was noticeable. With a titanic effort in creating this piece, the builders have brought the history of this tragedy to life.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sinking_of_the_RMS_Titanic
Wikipedia / RMS Titanic / Pasenger Liner Disaster

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