§ MR. HAVELOCK WILSON
I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether his attention has been directed to the recent loss of the steamship City of Agra off Cape Vilano, and to the helpless condition of the Lascar seamen who formed part of the crew; whether he can state how many of these, Lascar seamen were rated as able-bodied seamen, and whether the section of the Merchant Shipping Act, which provides that no seaman shall be entitled to the rating of A.B. unless he has previously had four years' sea service, is enforced on vessels carrying Lascar crews; whether, taking into consideration that Lascar seamen are unsuitable for cold latitudes, he is prepared to recommend that Lascar seamen should be employed only in warm latitudes; and whether any inquiry will be held into the cause of the loss of the steamship City of Agra?
§ MR. RITCHIE
Yes, Sir, the case of the City of Agra has been before me. The Board of Trade ordered an Inquiry into her loss on the 1st instant, and the Inquiry is now being held at Glasgow. As the case is, therefore, sub judice I do not think it advisable to make any statement with regard to it at the present time.