Titanic sinking

by Walter Olson on April 17, 2008

A new book contends that subpar rivets and riveting might have materially contributed to the disaster. Given the erosion of statutes of limitations, might that give rise to lawsuits, even after all this time? (Childs, Apr. 15).

{ 2 comments }

1 Jim Collins 04.17.08 at 12:17 pm

Was it the rivets or was it the high carbon content in the steel? I know! Maybe the iceberg had something to do with it.

2 Todd Rogers 04.17.08 at 1:44 pm

One might reason, Jim, that a causal relationship between hitting an iceberg and shortly thereafter taking on water, and the eventual sinking might exist. But, given that icebergs are 1) rarely insured, 2) don’t typically generate profit, 3) not only don’t have deep pockets but typically have no pockets, 4) aren’t typically incorporated with wealthy investors, 5) (fill in random litigation target here), it’s hard to imagine that even someone who is superfluously generous with his reasoning might conclude the iceberg was even 1% at fault. How unreasonable would it sound to a jury that the iceberg knew or should have known that a large vessel was approaching and thus should have moved aside? Are you kidding me? If anyone is to blame, who has yet to be named, it would be James Cameron, Leonardo DiCaprio, and 20th Century Fox – they’re the real culprits.

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