The loss of the Titanic
Listen to the tape then answer the question below.
What would have happened if only two of the sixteen water-tight compartments had been flooded?
The great ship, Titanic, sailed for New York from Southampton on April 10th, 1912. She was carrying 1,316 passengers and crew of 891. Even by modern standards, the 46,000 ton Titanic was a colossal ship. At the time, however, she was not only the largest ship that had ever been built, but was regarded as unsinkable, for she had sixteen watertight compartments. Even if two of these were flooded, she would still be able to float. The tragic sinking of this great liner will always be remembered, for she went down on her first voyage with heavy loss of life.
Four days after setting out, while the Titanic was sailing across the icy water of the North Atlantic, huge iceberg was suddenly spotted by a lookout. After the alarm had been given, the great ship turned sharply to avoid a direct collision. The Titanic turned just in time, narrowly missing the immense walk of ice which rose over 100 feet out of the water beside her. Suddenly, there was a slight trembling sound from below, and the captain went down to see what had happened. The noise had been so faint that no one though that the ship had been damaged. Below, the captain realized to his horror that the Titanic was sinking rapidly, for five of her sixteen watertight compartments had already been flooded! The order to abandon ship was given and hundreds of people plunged into the icy water. As there were not enough lifeboats for everybody, 1,500 lives were lost.
New words and expressions 生词和短语
巨轮“泰坦尼克”号1912年4月10日从南安普敦起锚驶向纽约。船上载有1,316名乘客与891名船员。却使用现代标准来衡量，45,000 吨的“泰坦尼克”号与算得上一艘巨轮了。当时，这艘轮船不仅是造船史上建造的最大的一艘船，而且也被认为是不会沉没的。因为船由16个密封舱组成，即使有 两个舱进水，仍可漂浮的水面上。然而，这艘巨轮首航就下沉，造成大批人员死亡。人们将永远记着这艘巨轮的沉没惨剧。 “泰坦尼克”起航后的第4天，它正行驶在北大西洋冰冷的海面上。突然，了望员发现一座冰山。警报响过不久，巨轮急转弯，以避免与冰山正面相撞。“泰坦尼 克”这个弯拐得及时，紧贴着高出海面100英尺的巨大的冰墙擦过去。突然，从船舱下部传来一声微颤音，船长走下船舱去查看究竟。由于这个声音非常轻，没人 会想到船身已遭损坏。在下面，船长惊恐的地发现“泰坦尼克”号正在急速下沉，16个密封舱已有5个进水。于是，他发出弃船的命令，几百人跳进了冰冷刺骨的 海水里。由于没有足够的救生艇运载所有乘客，结果，1,500 人丧生。