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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

THE "BIRKENHEAD DRILL"

DEATH AT
               DANGER
                           POINT

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Few of us....if really 'any' of us recall the "The Birkenhead Disaster"....which if you read up on the subject...still ranks as one of the world's worst shipwrecks, yet deserves to remain memorable if only for the value of its trend-setting attitude toward women and children.

Above you see a sketch of the HMS Birkenhead breaking up after running aground on jagged rocks at 'Danger Point' off South African coast while en route to quell a native revolt in 1852. 

Now you would think that a ship 'going down' there would be nothing short of 'panic' with all onboard....well instead of 'panic', which most generally accompanied such disasters....the highly disciplined troops of the 74th Royal Highland Fusilliers stood at attention as they quietly drowned....their actions and self-sacrifice helped HMS Birkenhead's captain to coin the phrase "women and children into the boats first."

So...if you wish to read just a short version of this....[4 or 5 pages]...you can click: HERE  to read the article: Death At Danger Point.
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