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NAME

RMS. CARPATHIA

CLASS

LINER

LAUNCHED

AUGUST 6th 1902

BUILT

SWAN HUNTER / WALLSEND / NEWCASTLE / ENGLAND

WEIGHT

13,750 TONS

LENGTH

558 FEET

WIDTH

64 FEET

SPEED

14 KNOTS - PISTON ENGINES - TWO PROPELLERS


Although Carpathia was one of the largest Cunard ships in service in the early 1900s, the White Star and North German Lloyd lines were operating 20,000-ton ships at that time. Cunard operated Carpathia on the Liverpool - New York or Boston route in summer and on the Mediterranean route from Trieste and Fiume - America in winter carrying mainly Hungarian emigrants. Carpathia became famous after steaming full speed through the ice-covered North Atlantic while answering the distress call of the sinking Titanic. Although she covered 50 miles to reach the accident site in about 4 hours, Titanic had already sunk leaving only 705 survivors in lifeboats. All the survivors were taken onboard Carpathia and delivered safely to New York. At the time of that incident, the crew of the cargo ship Californian saw the flares, as they were only six miles from the stricken Titanic. It is still a mystery why they never responded to the flares or distress calls on the wireless.

Carpathia

By 1915, the British Admiralty had requisitioned Carpathia to serve as a troopship. On July 17th 1918, approximately 120 miles west of Ireland, Carpathia was steaming in a convoy bound for Boston when they came under attack by a German submarine. Two torpedoes slammed into Carpathia’s side causing irreparable damage. While her crew of 223 where evacuating the 57 passengers, a third torpedo struck killing five of the crew. Carpathia stayed afloat long enough for all her passengers and surviving crew to escape in lifeboats. She sank at 12.40 am, two and a half hours after the first torpedo struck. Although the escorting warships failed to sink the submarine, their relentless depth charge assault allowed the sloop HMS Snowdrop to pick up Carpathia’s survivors. The surviving passengers and crew were returned to Liverpool.

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