HC Deb 13 March 1884 vol 285 cc1357-8

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, If his attention has been called to the burning of the ship Aurora, laden with kerosene oil in the Calcutta river, and to the official report of the engineer, showing that with a different wind or a different tide the whole of the shipping would have been destroyed; and, whether vessels similarly laden are allowed to go into crowded docks in this Country, or are allowed to anchor in rivers or harbours?


Sir, the Board of Trade have received no information as to the burning of the ship Aurora, laden with kerosene oil, in the Hooghly, beyond the telegraphic accounts which have appeared in the newspapers. I am informed by the India Office that the last mail left Calcutta on the 19th, and that the fire took place on the 20th ultimo, so that no account could have reached this country otherwise than by telegraph. As regards this country, the Petroleum Act, 1871, authorizes harbour authorities to make bye-laws, subject to the approval of the Board of Trade, with regard to vessels laden with petroleum and kerosene oil, and under this Act most of the harbour authorities have made regulations.