floats (noun)

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Senior Member
It’s from a documentary about sinking of Titanic:

“The ship is taking water here. Now, what happens. The captain releases the friction clutches on the watertight doors. –Say he doesn’t have time or he forgets, what then? –Well, the doors are fitted by floats beneath the door plates. If the floats are lifted, the doors close automatically."

Can anyone explain me what are floats in this context? I checked the dictionary of course, but I’m really bad with technical stuff, and I still don’t get it.
  • Hau Ruck

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Floats are hollow devices that float (verb) on water.

    Usually floats are made of hard or soft plastic.

    In this context the floats are attached to the doors. The floats are buoyant. When water fills the room the buoyancy of the floats will cause the doors to shut.
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