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100 years ago Titanic sank into a deep ice cold ocean

April 15, 1912 was fatal for 1.503 human lives, as the biggest passenger ship that was ever made, hit the iceberg and sank on it's first voyage.

  Author: KimmyK | Source: en.wikipedia.org | 15th April 2012  

Exactly 100 years ago, at 2:20am a famous British steam powered cruise ship has sank, leaving only 705 survivors of total 2.223 people that were on-board for this historical, first cruise (maiden voyage) by Titanic ever. The largest (883 feet, 269 meters) and most luxurious cruise ship that was ever built until in that time, was believed to be the safest passenger vessel to ever cross the seas.

First passengers started to board on April 10, 1912 in Southampton England and the next day in Queenstown Ireland. At noon of April 11, Titanic started it's voyage over Atlantic ocean to the New York City. During the cruise, ship received 6 warnings about presence of icebergs and regardless the heavy weather and cold air, captain of Titanic chose to ignore them.

On April 14 at 11:30pm, when the fatal iceberg was spotted, it was unfortunately to late for Titanic to change the course in order to avoid disaster. After the iceberg collision, Titanic has suffered 6 smaller holes that were not bigger then 1,2 square meters, but succumbed to pressure and started getting bigger. 30 minutes after impact, captain ordered to start with evacuation of Titanic, which was at first taken as a joke as Titanic was believed to be unsinkable. It's a well know fact, the ship orchester continued playing almost until the bitter end in order to calm passengers down.

Only two hours after the collision, at 2:20am, Titanic sank into a deep cold ocean, together with captain and other 1.502 people attending the historical voyage. 705 people got saved, and it is believed they would be able to save 500 additional lives, if ship officers knew the capacity of lifeboats a bit better. According to survivors,  stern (back part) of Titanic rose to about 45 degrees out of the watter, the construction could not hold the immense pressure and it broke off. Bow (front part) sank immediately, stern was still floating for a few minutes then sank into depths as well.

Water temperature was about 2 degrees Celsius (36°F), making chances of survival even harder. It was told, already 20 minutes after sinking of Titanic, dead silence fold the scene of tragedy, as most of the people froze to death, fell unconscious or drowned. 30 minutes after sinking only one lifeboat has returned to pull another 13 people from claws of certain death. At 4am, passenger steamship Carpathia, that responded to Titanic's SOS distress calls, to recover the surviving passengers.

Survivors arrived to New York one day after the disaster and were awaited by about 40.000 people. The passengers were attended by various charity organizations, who raised few million pounds in charity funds. Couple of days after disaster, names of survivors started to emerge, and it was quite obvious the survival rate was the biggest among first and second class passengers. In the third class, only one third of children were lucky enough to have survived.

One week to follow, a number of ships arrived to the scene of tragedy, to try and recover bodies of unlucky Titanic passengers. They found 328 of them, wearing rescue vests and floating on ocean surface. Various photographs of icebergs popped up, the one you can see bellow, is believed to be the one that was fatal for Titanic. According to newspapers, it was 30 meters tall, 600 meters wide and 120 meters long and there was still paint job that came of Titanic visible on the side of it. Reports do differ from one another, making pin pointing of real data and photographs quite hard.

One year after, the plans and theories on how to pull once majestic Titanic back to surface, were already in progress, at least in theory. Only in 1985, a French-American expedition stumbled across the silent, cold and deep ocean grave. They were surprised to find Titanic 21 miles away from a location of the last SOS call and they also confirmed Titanic being broken into two huge pieces. Wrecks were scattered on area of 8 x 4,8 kilometers and 3.840 meters (12.600 feet) deep at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.

Since the discovery, a number of remote controlled deep sea vehicles visited the site, to bring various objects and artifacts back to the surface and into museums.

Quite a few Titanic themed movies were created, most of the people are familiar with the one that received 11 Oscars. On a 100 year anniversary, director James Cameron, who is also a "Titanic enthusiast", decided to reedit his original movie, correcting some mistakes (for example, position of stars during the sinking) and turning it into 3D.

National Geographic and James Cameron, took all the recent data into account and created a new animation of how the sinking of Titanic really happened. Take a look.


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NikMan, 23rd Apr 2012, 12:28 PM
Did you know that Titanic was not the worst catastrophe on sea? On January 1945 Russian sink Wilheim Gustloff, a big ship that carried about 9000 passengers. It was used as Hospital ship but in that time it was served also as a war ship, carry Nazis.

The biggest ship catastrophe can be found on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MV_Wilhelm_....

Doña Paz, ship for only civilians is today known as biggest civilian tragedy on sea with 4375 deaths. Philippine ship did crash into a Tanker full of Fuel and ignited a huge explosion.

Biggest civilian tragedy on sea can be found on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MV_Do%C3%B1....

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KimmyK, 24th Apr 2012, 8:29 AM
Yes, I came across that fact when writing the Titanic article, thank you for sharing!
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