The angle at which the Rohilla was jammed to the Scar presented her broadside on to the waves. Her bow had risen over the edge of the rock facing the stern lower into the water. The sea constantly washed over the well decks and spray was thrown above the height of the bridge.
Captain Neilson ordered all hands to Lifeboat Stations. Five seamen were washed overboard as they ran to their posts and were drowned. Boat crews were ordered to make ready for lowering but not to do so without the Captain’s express command. They stood by in these conditions until dawn.
An officer was sent to bring the five women on board up to the bridge. There were four nurses attached to the medical staff and the only female member of the crew a stewardess Miss I.K. Robert.
There were twenty lifeboats on the ship, more than sufficient to take everybody on board.
Copyright © Ken Wilson 1981