HC Deb 05 May 1887 vol 314 c960
MR. R. W. DUFF (Banffshire)

asked the first Lord of the Admiralty, If he can give the House any information concerning the loss of H.M.S. Escort off Malta on the 28th April; whether it is true that three lives were lost on that occasion; whether it is correct that the Hellespont Government tug, sent out to rescue the crow of the Escort, returned to Malta without having accomplished that object, and that the crew of the Escort who were saved owed their lives to the exertions of Maltese fishermen; and if he can explain these circumstances to the House?


The dockyard tug Escort, when returning to Valetta Harbour on a dark and squally night, ran on the Monsciar Reef and was wrecked, with the los of three lives. The Hellespont tug, that had come out from the harbour to succour the Escort, finding that there was no hope of saving the ship, and that the heavy breakers prevented her getting near enough to the wreck to save the crew, returned to the harbour for a lifeboat. In the meantime, three Maltese fishing boats put off to the wreck from Marsa Scala; and though unable to get alongside, they suceeeded in approaching sufficiently near to enable certain of the crew to reach them by swimming. Great credit is due to Inspector of Police Salvatore Cassar and the crews of the Maltese boats for the courageous manner in which they effected the rescue of the shipwrecked men.