§ MR. ALLAN (Gateshead)
I beg to ask the First Lord of the Admiralty if he can state the number of days H.M.S. "Europa" took to steam to Australia, and what was her average speed during the voyage and consumption of fuel per day; whether he has any report of the Belleville boilers, fitted on this vessel, from the Admiralty inspector who was on board; what is the extent of the repairs necessitated to the boilers after her arrival on the station; and if the heat between decks was insupportable to the crew.
§ THE FIRST LORD OF THE ADMIRALTY (Mr. GOSCHEN,) St. George's, Hanover Square
The number of days of actual steaming occupied by the "Europa" on the voyage from Plymouth to Sydney was forty-nine days. The speed varied from eleven to thirteen knots, the average being a little under twelve, which is about the usual speed for these voyages by Her Majesty's ships when there is no urgency. The total coal consumption was about 6,000 tons.† See The Parliamentary Debates [Fourth Series], Vol. lxxx., p. 612.150 The coal consumption of the "Europa" was known to be very large before she left England compared with that of her sister ships fitted with similar boilers, and for that reason an inspector of machinery was sent out in her to investigate the cause. This, so far as we know at present, he has not been successful in doing, and it is not probable that we shall be able to find out the cause of the high coal consumption until the ship returns to England, and the necessary examination of the engines, where the main fault probably lies, can be made. The ship was detained at Malta for some time while some experimental trials were being made, but these did not throw any sufficient light on the cause of the high consumption. No report has been made by the inspector of machinery attributing the fault to the Belleville boilers. No report has been received as to any repairs being required to the boilers since her arrival at Sydney. The stokers suffered considerably from the heat in the passage through the Red Sea, especially some of the younger men. There is no reason to suppose that the heat between decks was greater than is usual in other cruisers when passing through those regions.
§ MR. GOSCHEN
I have answered the hon. Member as to the number of days she was steaming. She was detained at Malta for a considerable time for trials.