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The Final Seconds before Collision: Part
7 of 12
Bruce A. Trinque
Part 7 – Trimmer Thomas Dillon
Q: Were you
on duty in the engine room on the night of the accident?
Q: Is there
more than one engine room?
A: I do not know.
Q: I see
on the plan immediately after the last boiler there
is a compartment marked “Reciprocating engine.”
Is that where you were?
A: That is where I understand I was – in the engine
room. I have never been down below before; it was my
first trip down there.
you be in a coal bunker, or where?
A: In the engine room where the main engines are.
Q: What were
you doing there? What were your duties there?
A: I belonged to the upper section, but the upper section
of boilers was not lit up, and they sent us to the engine
room to assist in cleaning up the gear.
Q: Did you
feel the shock when the ship struck?
Q: And shortly
before that had the telegraph rung?
Q: Can you
say at all how long before she struck that was?
A: Two seconds.
Q: What was
the order given by the telegraph?
A: I could not tell you.
Q: You just
heard it ring. Then a few seconds after that you felt
a slight shock?
Trimmer Dillon was disoriented as to his location due
to the temporary nature of his work assignment, he did
appear confident that the engine room telegraph sounded
only two (or, a few) seconds before the collision with
the iceberg. This appears consistent with the time frame
proposed by Pellegrino. Given that the order to put
the helm hard-a-starboard and the order via the telegraph
to the engine room were essentially simultaneous, Dillon’s
testimony argues against the accuracy of the British
Enquiry 37-second estimate.