Anyway, when empty in the UK and returning to the USA, the Liberties were ballasted with gravel (shingle) on the tween decks. It was held in place by boards inserted into the webs of the I beam stanchions.
Ships that survived the trip thru winter storms reported that the ship would flex, the boards would come loose, and the shingle ballast would then shift.
Too much shift and the ship would roll right over. Remember this ballast was carried kinda high, on the tween deck not the lower hold.
Nobody could get out then, or if they did hypothermia certainly killed them within minutes.
So it would be "Posted Missing" lost in storm without a trace.
: I recall a WW2 vet telling me that they called
: these ships Kaiser Coffins.
: --Previous Message--
: The big problem which came to light was with
: Liberty Ships - several had severe problems.
: There was a major set of joint UK/USA
: studies done both on sample structures and
: on full sized ships - the UK taking at least
: three out of service for rather extreme
: Quality of welding rods, quality of
: welds/parent metals, quality of general and
: detail design (e.g. square hatch corners
: forming stress concentration), effect of
: cold weather/water,
: Towards the end of the war the UK tried to
: replace welded ships with riveted on the
: Russian Run (likewise using UK built escort
: carriers where possible) but only to a
: limited extent. Strengthening was also put
: in place. A major series of academic papers
: were produced in professional journals.
: See, FOR INSTANCE ;