HC Deb 09 March 1880 vol 251 cc683-4

asked the President of the Board of Trade, Whether it is his intention to order an inquiry into the loss of the "Strelna," wrecked off the Vickerland, near Antwerp, on the 2nd of January 1880, and which is said to have had on board 1,100 tons of linseed, although she appears to be of only 664 tons burden; and, if the inquiry will be directed to ascertain whether the said linseed was in bulk or in bags, and, if in bulk, whether any and, if so, what amount of shifting boards were employed to prevent the shifting of the cargo?


Sir, the hon. Gentleman appears to have been incorrectly informed when he states that the Strelna was lost, as I am assured that she is at this moment in a dry dock at Antwerp. The accident which befell her seems to be very simply explained, and appears to have had nothing what' ever to do with her cargo. She was bound from Eiga for Antwerp, and completed her sea voyage in safety. On arrival off the river there was so much ice that it was unsafe for her to proceed up, and she put into Flushing Dock, where she remained for a fortnight, and on the navigation being resumed she left in charge of a Belgian official pilot, who appears to have run her ashore on the banks, which were not clearly discernible owing to the river having overflowed them. As far as our information goes, the accident appears to have been simply the result of an error on the part of the pilot, and to be in no way connected with the ship, or her cargo, or the conduct of her officers. In these circumstances, the Board of Trade would not be justified with their present information in ordering an inquiry.