Getaway Guide to a Titanic Legacy

April 09, 2018 - 11:13 am
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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- Bad things can happen anytime and anyplace. And then the unsinkable happened. One-hundred-and-six years ago this week, the pride of the White Star Ocean Liner fleet, the "Titanic" struck an iceberg in the North Atlantic. It had been advertised as "Unsinkable." It sank. Over 1,500 passengers and crew died. Ocean travel has never been the same. Here is the Titanic legacy for modern day cruising.

LIFEBOATS

The Titanic had only enough lifeboats for half of the people onboard. Today, cruise ships carry more than enough for all and there are more life jackets than canapes. But passengers must know how to use them, the life-saving equipment, not the canapes. The Titanic had not held drills. Today they are mandatory, usually at the beginning of the cruise. Do not brush them off. Remember the recent fatal grounding of the Concordia and the sinking of the Andrea Doria.

Rescue Boat
Photo credit: Kathryn Lloyd

NAVIGATING THE DECKS

Cruise ships are starting to resemble small cities. Getting from cabins to boat deck, pool deck, dining and theaters takes a lot of memorization. Take the time to learn how to get around, especially to your lifeboat station. Personally, I do not get on cruise ship elevators. That was fine when we only had to climb one to four decks. There are a lot more now. Get in shape.

Cruise Ship in the Caribbean
Photo credit: Jay Lloyd

THE LONG DROP

When all the Titanic lifeboats had launched and those left behind were leaping into the sea to abandon the sinking ship, it was intentional. Today, we hear of numerous accidental falls into the ocean as the ship continues on its way. Recently one woman was caught on surveillance video trying to climb from one cabin patio to another when she went overboard. She had been drinking. Be very aware of hijinx at the rails and on patios. 

INTERNATIONAL ICE PATROL

After the Titanic disaster, an International Ice Patrol was launched to track and report iceberg locations and movement. It is flown by the U.S. and Canadian Coast Guards. Cruise ships today rarely sail in ice floe waters, but it nice to know the patrol is there.

Canadian Ice Breaker
Photo credit: Jay Lloyd

THE TITANIC EXPERIENCE

On this side of the Atlantic, Halifax, Nova Scotia is the last resting place of many Titanic victims. They were brought to Snow's Mortuary. It is now the city's Five Fisherman restaurant where Mary and I were served dishes enjoyed in Titanic's First Class Dining Room. The Maritime Museum here holds an amazing display of artifacts plucked from the frigid North Atlantic.

In Philadelphia, the new Sporting Club on Rittenhouse Square sports a Titanic Escape Room, while the Independence Seaport Museum holds a Titanic Exhibit that features the role of Philadelphians aboard the ill-fated ship.

Independence Seaport Museum
Photo credit: Jay Lloyd)

Survivors were landed at New York's Pier 54. It is now a performance venue on the Hudson. A Titanic Memorial Lighthouse can be seen at the South Street Seaport.

NYC Titanic Memorial
Photo credit: Jay Lloyd

Now, go and enjoy that cruise.