Puslapio vaizdai

8. This reenactment under local conditions was made specially to study visibility, and if practicable, to show the distances at which a submarine could see a destroyer, and a destroyer see a submarine running with the periscopes exposed over the identical courses and at speeds that had been used by the vessels which collided.

9. The only variable factor likely to enter would be the weather conditions and the vigilance of the lookouts. The following day the court heard the testimony of the observing destroyer and submarine captains who appeared before the Court.

10. The weather conditions on December 17 were accurately described in the logs of the various vessels present on that date and in the log of the Wood End Coast Guard Station, all of which were available to the court. The weather in the forenoon of December 17 was also testified to by the commander of the submarine S-8. The weather during this reenactment differed from that of December 17 in that the wind was 1-2 instead of 5 and the sea "smooth" instead of "choppy."

11. On account of these differences the commanding officer of the S-8 was sent to Provincetown to keep the court informed of the weather conditions actually existing at that place and when the weather conditions simulated those of December 17 to inform the court. On Tuesday, January 17, such information was received; the court proceeded to Provincetown; took a position similar to that occupied on the previous occasion; the S-6 was again sent over the course to simulate the movements of the S-4 on December 17. On this test all of the members of the court, observing independently, sighted the "feather" of the periscope of the S-6 at a distance of about 2,500 yards and thereafter were able to keep it in sight with the naked eye during the entire run of the S-6 over the course.

12. The commanding officer of the S-8 had made numerous standardization runs over this course, passed end buoy C-AA and turned off the course planing toward the surface as a routine procedure. He was directed to carry out again this procedure on the S-6, putting over the steering rudders and the diving rudders at the angles found on the S-4, and to come to the surface after a given number of seconds as indicated by the movements of the S-4. This maneuver was made to check the testimony given by two eye-witnesses from the Wood End Light Station.

13. On the Paulding a reenactment with a stop-watch was had of the movements of the different men on the bridge from the time of sighting the submarine until the collision. The average time of these movements was 12 seconds, and in no case did the individual time differ by more than one second from the average time.

14. The Monaghan, the sister ship of the Paulding, was tested, while making a speed of 18 knots, to determine the time to come to a speed of less than 1 knot when engines were put full speed astern; and the angle through which the bow would swing in 12 seconds after the order "full right" to the helmsman.

15. The time of lowering periscopes on the S-8 from full height to positions found to exist on the S-4 was 11 seconds.

16. As a result of these data and the testimony given, the court was enabled to establish a clear picture of the movements of the vessels on the day of the collision and check in several ways the testimony of different witnesses as to elapsed times between important events; to plot the position of the ships on the chart with accuracy; and to establish critical points at which action was necessary to avoid collision and beyond which any action would be futile.

17. The court examined all persons that could be found that could throw any light on the collision or on the subsequent rescue operations, or who indicated in any way a desire to appear before it."

18. A letter was addressed to the mayor of Provincetown, Mass., requesting him to advise the court of the names of any persons who had witnessed the collision or who had submitted plans for the rescue.

19. The court gave the most liberal interpretation to its precept in order to obtain any evidence that might throw light on the matter of the inquiry, particularly that which might deal with the efforts to rescue the crew of the S-4.



The court finds that

20. The S-4 left the navy yard, Portsmouth, N. H., on December 15, 1927, to hold standardization trials in the vicinity of Provincetown.

21. The S-4 had just completed her annual overhaul, and all repairs requested by her commanding officer affecting the safety of the ship, operating either on the surface or submerged, had been made.

22. Just prior to leaving the navy yard the S-4 had undergone special tests to insure her water-tight integrity submerged to a depth of 200 feet.

23. She was fully manned by a competent crew of officers and men.

24. The S-4 left Provincetown Harbor at about 12.30 p. m. on December 17 1927, to commence her submerged standardization trials in obedience to lawful orders of the Navy Department.


25. The submarine course used by the S-4 at Provincetown is an official trial course maintained by the Navy.

26. This trial course was established in 1909 and has been continuously in use for the trials of submarines since that time.

27. The records of the board of inspection and survey show that as many standardization trials of submarines have been held in the month of December as in any other month of the year except September.

28. This trial course is particularly adapted for the purpose used, for the following reasons: (1) It is outside and removed from sea lanes; (2) there is but little shipping in and out of Provincetown passing adjacent to the trial course except small coasting and fishing vessels; (3) it is in close proximity to a sheltered harbor; (4) it has deep water over its entire course; (5) it is protected generally from prevailing winds; (6) it is free from conflicting tidal influences; and (7) it is close to two navy yards.

29. The course is primarily used as a submarine trial course.

30. It has been used for conducting trials of submarines during every month of the year except January and February.


31. No submarine warning flag was displayed anywhere in the vicinity of the trial course during the trials of the S-4.

32. The Wandank was at Provincetown during the trials of the S-4 under the orders of the representative of the board of inspection and survey and was available to display the submarine warning flag had it been considered necessary or desirable.

33. Since 1907 the monthly pilot charts published by the Hydrographic Office of the Navy have borne a United States submarine warning flag with the following legend: "The submarine distinguishing and warning flag is hoisted on the tender or parent ship of the United States submarines to indicate that submarines are operating in that vicinity. It consists of a rectangular red flag with white center on which is the profile of a torpedo in black. Launches accompanying submarines also fly this flag. Vessels seeing this signal should give the escorting vessel a wide berth and keep a good lookout for submarines."

34. The Navy Signal Manual, 1920, Navy Department, C. S. P. 293, page 125, section 661, has the following: "The submarine warning flag is hoisted on the tender or parent ship of submarines or on launches accompanying them to indicate that submarines are operating submerged in that vicinity."

35. Owing to modern developments and improvements in submarine construction, particularly since the World War, enabling these vessels to look out for themselves, the use of special warnings regarding the proximity of submarines is not considered necessary or desirable by officers of submarine experience.


36. The knowledge obtained from standardization trials is essential to the efficient and safe operation of submarines.

37. The standardization trials were to be conducted under the immediate direction of a representative of the board of inspection and survey, Navy Department, namely, Lieut. Commander W. F. Callaway, United States Navy, an officer of long experience in submarines.

38. In conducting standardization trials the representative of the board of inspection and survey gives the commanding officer a program of procedure. The commanding officer is at all times responsible for the handling and safety of his ship.

39. During submerged standardization trials both periscopes are exposed from 2 to 6 feet (periscope depth); one periscope is used for observing range marks;* the other for lookout and navigational purposes. The deck of the S-4, when running at periscope depth (2 to 6 feet of periscope exposed), is about 20 feet below the surface of the water.

40. A man looking through a periscope can see surrounding objects as well as a man with one eye sitting in an open boat looking through a telescope.

41. Conducting standardization trials by submarines is no more hazardous than other submarine operations.

42. The depth of water on the inner trial course, where the S-4 was operating at the time of the collision, was about 100 feet, sufficient to permit her safely to pass beneath surface vessels of any draft.

43. The S-4 on the inner trial course, running at periscope depth, could see a surface vessel approaching Provincetown, as was the Paulding, at a distance of about 5,000 yards or for at least six minutes before meeting, if the surface vessel were making 18 knots and the submarine 6 knots directly toward each other. 44. Until the Paulding changed course at buoy CD to the true course of 94°, her course was well clear of the path of the S-4.

45. The normal procedure for a submarine when at the end of a run making submerged standardization runs is to put the rudder over to turn away from the course and then turn with opposite rudder rounding to on the reverse course for the next run.

46. It is the training and duty of the commanding officer of a submarine running at periscope depth to keep clear of surface vessels.


47. The S-4 was seen by the lookout at the coast guard station at Wood End at various times during the afternoon of December 17, running such trials over the inner trial course between white buoys C-AA and C-BB.

48. Shortly before 3.30 she was seen making a submerged run at periscope depth to the southwestward over the inner trial course (from buoy C-BB to buoy C-AA).

49. The S-4 finished the run, passed buoy C-AA, and following the normal procedure, turned at the end of the run and changed course to the left.

50. After passing buoy C-AA she also began to come to the surface.

51. It was a normal and proper action to come to the surface to show herself to an approaching destroyer if ample time remained for the destroyer to pass clear or after having completed the day's work.

52. At 3.37, when the superstructure was showing about one-third of its height above the water, the S-4 was struck just forward of the 4-inch gun on the starboard side by the United States Coast Guard Destroyer Paulding and sank with all hands on board, going down by the bow.


53. The S-4 lies on the bottom in latitude 42° 00′ 39′′ north, longitude 70° 10' 57'' west; depth of water, 102 feet.

54. As a result of the collision and the sinking of the S-4 the following lost their lives:


Jones, Roy K., lieutenant commander.
McGinley, Joseph A., lieutenant.

Fitch, Graham N., lieutenant (junior grade).
Weller, Donald, lieutenant (junior grade).
Callaway, William F., lieutenant commander.


Bethke, Clarence F., engineman (first class).
Bishop, Walter, radio man (first class).
Boone, Earl W., chief electrician's mate.
Brown, Henry H., fireman (third class).

Burrell, Charles F., seaman (second class).

Calcott, Charles B., machinist's mate (third class).
Cash, Elmer L., chief radio man.

Crabb, Russell A., torpedo man (first class).
Dempsey, William, machinist's mate (second class).
Diefenbach, Robert W., signal man (first class).
Fennell, John J., machinist's mate (first class).
Galvin, Daniel M., fireman (second class).
Goering, Donald F., electrician's mate (first class).
Haaland, Peder, machinist's mate (first class).
Heney, Dewey V., ship's cook (second class).
Harris, Buster, seaman (second class).
Hodges, Aron A., chief machinist's mate.

Hodges, Arthur F., machinist's mate (first class).
Kempfer, Paul R., electrician's mate (second class).
Long, "J" H., fireman (third class).

O'Shields, Fred H., engineman (second class).
Pelnar, George, seaman (second class).

Powers, John J., coxswain.

Rose, Rudolph J., electrician's mate (third class).
Seaton, Alfred E., quartermaster (third class).
Snizek, Frank, torpedo man (second class).
Short, Roger L., torpedo man (first class).

Sternman, Joseph W., engineman (second class).
Stevens, Joseph L., seaman (first class).
Strange, Carl B., seaman (first class).

Tedar, Mariano, mess attendant.

Tolson, Walter Ross, seaman (first class).
Thompson, Carl H., engineman (second class).
White, James J., fireman (second class).

Ford, Charles A., civilian.

55. The S-4 has not been raised and is to date a total loss.


56. On December 17, 1927, the Coast Guard destroyer Paulding was operating in the vicinity of Massachusetts Bay and along the shores of Cape Cod in accordance with lawful orders, having proceeded to sea from Boston at 9 a. m. that day.

57. Only oral orders are ordinarily issued to commanding officers of Coast Guard vessels, their movements being held as confidential.

58. When acting singly, as was the Paulding on December 17, 1927, the speed is left to the discretion of the commanding officer.

59. On December 17, 1927, the Paulding was cruising at 18 knots and continued making this speed until the engines were backed full speed at the time of sighting the S-4 at about 3.37 p. m.

60. The Paulding had practically her full complement of officers and men; her commanding officer is an experienced seaman.

61. On the afternoon of December 17, 1927, the Paulding passed Peaked Hill Bar at 2.46 p. m. on westerly course, thence rounded Race Point heading for the approaches to Provincetown Harbor, following the line of buoys, and after identifying a fishing vessel, the William Langtry of Boston, in the vicinity of Wood End, passed buoy CD abeam on the port hand 500 yards distant, and changed course to 110° by standard compass, 94° true, at 3.33 p. m.


62. While on course 94° true, between buoys CD and C-AA and to the southward of them, speed 18 knots, at about 3.37 p. m. the Paulding sighted two periscopes of a submarine one point on her port bow distant about 75 yards from the bow of the Paulding.

63. The periscopes were mvoing toward and across the Paulding's bow and rising.

64. Immediately before sighting the periscopes, the officer of the deck had given orders to the helmsman to change course 5° to the left, but before the destroyer had started to swing to the left the order was given “right full.”

65. As a result of commands given on the bridge, the Paulding was given "full right rudder" and backed at full speed.


66. As a result of the collision the S-4 sank, going down by the bow with all hands. The Paulding at once lowered a boat to search for and rescue possible survivors, dropped a buoy to mark the sport of the sinking and took across bearings.

67. At this time the visibility was excellent, a fresh breeze blowing and the sea choppy.

68. The Paulding was able to proceed unassisted to an anchorage in Provincetown Harbor and later went to the Boston Navy Yard for repairs.

69. One officer and two members of the crew of the United States Coast Guard destroyer Paulding received minor injuries as a result of the collision.

70. The Paulding was damaged to the extent of $19,765, and stores to the value of $604.77 were lost due to the bottom being taken out of the destroyer forward.


71. Just prior to sighting the S-4 the commanding officer was in the chart house just abaft the pilot house examining the chart. The officer of the deck was in the pilot house conning the ship, which was proceeding at high speed, and checking up on the buoys by which he was navigating. The junior officer of the deck (a chief quartermaster) was on the starboard wing of the bridge examining, through glasses, signals flying on a distant lightship three points on the starboard bow. The quartermaster was in the pilot house checking the steering of the ship and at times looking at the light vessel trying to make out storm signals flying near the monument in Provincetown and identifying ships and buoys. 72. The officer of the deck, the junior officer of the deck (a chief quartermaster), and a seaman acting as quartermaster were charged with duties of keeping a lookout.

73. All of these men had other duties to perform.

74. There was no regular lookout on watch charged exclusively with the duties of lookout.

75. The central part of the bridge of the Paulding is housed in to form a pilot house. An unobstructed view can not be obtained from the pilot house due to the frames and panels between the windows.


76. The Light and Buoy List for the Coast of Massachusetts states that the buoys AA and BB mark the submarine trial course and warns vessels to keep clear of the buoys marking the outer trial course.

77. The officer in charge of the personnel of the Coast Guard station at Wood End knew that submarines were operating in the vicinity of the trial course off that station on the 17th of December and had been so operating for several days prior to that time.

78. The Coast Guard district commander, whose headquarters were at Provincetown, knew that submarines were operating at this time in the vicinity of the trial course.

79. The log at the Wood End Coast Guard station showed 12 entries of submarines operating in the vicinity of the trial course on the four days preceding December 17.

80. The commander of the Conyngham, also commanding the Coast Guard division to which the Paulding was attached, and the commander of the Paulding testified that they had no knowledge that submarines were operating in the vicinity of Provincetown during those days. They did know that these trial courses were marked on the chart and were so used.


81. The Paulding approached the submarine trial course at a high rate of speed.

82. The Paulding failed to keep clear of the submarine trial course.

83. On approaching the inner trial course the Paulding failed to sight the S-4 in time to avoid collision.

84. After the destroyer had rounded buoy CD to course 94° true, the distance between the two vessels was about 2,000 yards. The S-4 then had the Paulding on her starboard bow, the two vessels approaching at speeds of 18 and about 61⁄2 knots, respectively, or, roughly 24 knots an hour, or 800 yards a minute.

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