§ MR. C. DUNCAN (Barrow-in-Furness)
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his attention has been called to the death of a workman named Meakin on board the steamship "Hyson," at Liverpool, on 9th April last, by becoming entangled in the machinery of the vessel's winch owing to the place being obscured by steam escaping from the cylinders of the winch and the inexperience of the boy in charge of same; if so, has any breach of the dock regulations been committed, and what steps are being taken to enforce such regulations.
(Answered by Mr. Secretary Gladstone.) I nave received a Report with regard to this accident. No breach of Regulation 14, relating to exhaust steam, or of Regulation 16, fixing the age below which persons may be employed as winch drivers, appears to have been committed. The escape of steam that occurred in this case was due apparently to the blowing out of the packing of the glands. The immediate cause of the accident was the catching of the clothes of the deceased in the shafts of the winch. It has not been the custom I understand to fence this part of the winch, which has not hitherto been regarded as dangerous, and the inspector states that no accident of the kind has occurred previously during the eighteen months he has been in the district. I am, however, causing inquiry to be made as to whether it would be practicable to do so. I have already stated in reply to Questions in the House the steps which I have taken to strengthen the inspection of docks; in particular, the staff of the Liverpool district, where the accident occurred, has been increased by an additional inspector's assistant.