HC Deb 03 June 1890 vol 344 c1854

I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether his attention has been called to the frequent cases in which smacks are run down by steam colliers in the estuary of the Thames, as in the case of the Osprey, of Burnham, on 18th May; and whether the Public Prosecutor can be instructed to take proceedings when loss of life has resulted from the neglect of those in charge of the steamer?


The case referred to by the hon. and gallant Member was reported in due course to the Board of Trade. On the information in my possession, such cases do not appear to be frequent, as the number of smacks run down by steamers of all kinds in the estuary of the Thames during the last six years has been 10, and the number of lives lost in consequence 14. With regard to the last paragraph of the question, when loss of life results from the personal culpable negligence of any person in charge of the steamer, the Public Prosecutor may take proceedings.