One very important conclusion arrived at by considering case histories, involves the "boats for all" principle. The disasters which befell the "Titanic", "Empress of Ireland", and "Lusitania" all showed that the number of people saved was considerably less than the accommodation available in the boats--on these ships about one half of the lifeboats were not launched successfully. This fact has been one of the forces behind development of alternative methods, such as inflatable life-rafts, inflatable embarkation chutes (as used on aircraft), and free-fall systems. Another indication of the lessons learned by marine safety authorities is the maximum number of people allowed in a lifeboat: in 1913 a Boats and Davits Committee recommended a 50 ft x 15 ft boat to be used for no more than 250 people and weigh 28 tons loaded. Today the limit is 150 people with a loaded boat of 20 tons, and it is expected that this maximum number of people will shortly be reduced again to 110 people. Development of shore-based life-boats cannot be ignored when reviewing shipboard systems, especially with regard to semi-inflatable inshore rescue boats, like the Atlantic 21, and the increasing number of man-overboard boats being installed on ships as traditional davit configurations change. The article provides a brief review of some of the ways in which new technology is affecting developments, and at the diversity of products available for the job.

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    IPC Industrial Press Limited

    Dorset House, Stamford Street
    London SE1 9LU,   England 
  • Publication Date: 1980-3

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  • Accession Number: 00312213
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 26 1980 12:00AM