Saving the Titanic is a 2012 TV documentary film which tells the untold story of the self-sacrifice and bravery of the ship’s engineers, stokers and firemen in the face of impending death. Starring an ensemble cast featuring David Wilmot ("The Guard," "The Tudors" and "Intermission") and Ciaran McMenamin ("Sinking of the Laconia," "David Copperfield" and "Primeval"), Saving the Titanic seeks to answer the question of what happened in the engine and boiler rooms after the ship’s fateful collision with a North Atlantic iceberg. Based on eyewitness accounts, this is the remarkable story of nine men from the engineering crew who fought courageously to hold back the power of the sea and keep the power systems running, even when they learned that all was lost. The engineering crew consisted of fireman and stokers, who shoveled coal into the ship’s 29 boilers that powered its two massive steam engines, and engineers who made sure the engines and other mechanical equipment functioned smoothly. A memorial to commemorate their bravery was erected in Liverpool, England and unveiled in 1916.
The engineering marvel of its day, the “virtually unsinkable” Titanic, built for the White Star Line, took less than two years to complete at a cost of about $7.5 million dollars. The ship carried more than 2,200 passengers and crew on its maiden voyage to New York City, departing from Southampton, England, on April 10, 1912 with stops in Cherbourg, France, and Queenstown, Ireland. Even though it was constructed with a double reinforced steel hull and 16 watertight compartments, as an added safety feature, the Titanic sank in less than
two and a half hours after striking an iceberg in the late evening of April 14, 1912. 1,496 died and 712 survivors were rescued by the Carpathia, which responded to Titanic's distress signals after the collision.