The cry of “women and children first” was not only heard loud and clear on the Titanic, it was generally obeyed.  The statistics show that 72% of the women aboard survived as opposed to 19% of the men – the freezing water claiming the victims.  “Striking water was like a thousand knives being driven into one’s body,” said Second Officer Charles Lightoller. “The temperature was 28f, four degrees below freezing.”  But class, too, played its part in the disaster.  Of the First Class passengers 62% survived, a number that dropped to 39% for Second Class passengers.  Of the 700 Third Class passengers, only 24% survived.

Titanic

Source: National Post