HC Deb 23 October 1902 vol 113 cc597-8
MR. BAIRD (Glasgow, Central)

To ask the President of the Board of Trade, why no inquiry has been held into the loss of the steamship "Islay" off Port Ellen on 15th September; and whether he will have an investigation made into the circumstances attending the loss and the causes of the delay in lowering the boats after the vessel struck.

(Answered by Mr. Gerald Balfour.) A preliminary inquiry, which was held in the case to which my hon. friend refers disclosed the fact that the cause of the stranding was the density of the fog, and, possibly, a slight error of judgment on the part of the master. The crew and passengers were safely landed by the ship's boats without any mishap, and the weather being still and the sea smooth there was no necessity for undue haste in lowering the boats, which were reported by the Board of Trade Surveyor as being in good order and easily handled when last surveyed.