HC Deb 28 February 1893 vol 9 cc555-6

I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether his attention has been called to the frequent loss of life on the estuary of the Thames through the running down of Essex barges by steamers; and whether he will consider the expediency of extending Rule 15 (Conservancy bye-laws) to Gravesend, and applying to it passenger steamers?


Details of all collisions resulting in loss of life are given in the Appendices to the Wreck Abstracts which are annually presented to Parliament. No loss of life was reported during the five years ended in June last from the running down of barges belonging to Essex in the estuary of the Thames, either above or below Gravesend. Two barges trading with places in Essex, but belonging elsewhere, were, during the same period, run into below Gravesend, resulting in the loss of two lives, and two barges of the same de- scription and employment were run into above Gravesend, also resulting in the loss of two lives. The Thames Conservancy have full and exclusive power to make rules for the navigation of the Thames, and the Board of Trade have no authority to extend their existing rules.