§ MR. J. C. MACDONA (Southwark, Rotherhithe)
I beg to ask the Secretary to the Admiralty whether he is in a position to inform the House whether the derelict, that he stated on 9th April instant was floating in the Mediterranean near to Gibraltar, is a waterlogged ship or only wreckage matter; and what steps he proposes taking to remove so dangerous an obstruction to the movements of Her Majesty's Fleet?
THE CIVIL LORD OF THE ADMIRALTY (Mr. EDMUND ROBEBTSON, Dundee)
No further report respecting this derelict has been received at the Admiralty.
§ MR. J. C. MACDONA
I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that the Cunard steamship Umbria, sighted at 1 p.m. on Saturday last, 25 miles west of the Fastnet, the British full-rigged ship Arno, that as a derelict was boarded a short time since by a prize crew, flying distress signals, whilst heading west-south-west, the wind being south by east, Captain Dutton of the Umbria having stated he believed that the officer in charge of the Arno had no charts available, or seemingly did not know the coast which he was so near; and whether, under these circumstances, the Board of Trade will advise the Trinity Board to send out to look after her either their own vessel or charter the Liverpool Tug Company, who lately brought the Loch Maree derelict so successfully from off the coast of Ireland to Belfast Harbour?
§ THE PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD OF TRADE (Mr. J. BRYCE, Aberdeen, S.)
The crew put on board the Arno by the Merrimac on April 4th, consisted of the 1490 Chief Officer and ten men of the crew of the latter vessel, and the Arno was then in thoroughly seaworthy condition. A notice has since been received from the owners of the cargo that she is now on her way to this country. It is not certain that the vessel seen by the Umbria was really the Arno, as the signal letters of that vessel are, M.W.S.D. not W.M.C.D., as reported by the Umbria, nor is it clear on what grounds the Captain of the latter vessel based his opinion as to the absence of charts. I see no occasion for communicating with the Trinity Board.