HC Deb 11 August 1881 vol 264 cc1522-3

asked the President of the Board of Trade, Whether, since the sinking of the "Princess Alice" steamboat, near Woolwich, in September 1878, whereby more than 700 people lost their lives, any additional means, and, if so, what, have been adopted by the owners of the river passenger steamers plying on the Thames to prevent similar losses of life in cases of the sudden sinking of these steamers; and, whether the owners have been advised by the Board of Trade to fit up the seats and benches on their vessels with cork cushions, or to have other similar buoyant apparatus such as has often been proposed for passenger vessels?


, in reply, said, he had ascertained that since the acci- dent in question many precautions had been considered, and several had been adopted, and, notably the Thames and Channel Steamboat Company had now applied to all their steamers plying to Gravesend and below it air cases under the portable seats. He was glad to say that these precautions had already been the means of saving life. A vessel was run down in 1880 by a steamboat and the crew thrown into the water; but all were saved by the means of these appliances.