HC Deb 26 October 1909 vol 12 cc833-4

asked the right hon. Gentleman if his professional advisers find difficulty in deciding whether Asiatic seamen can better bear the heat of the stoke-hole in tropical waters than European sailors can; and whether he has any official information showing that if Asiatics were not available for this purpose the trade of our Eastern mercantile marine would suffer?


It is not possible to lay down any general rule as to the relative capacity of Asiatics and Europeans to withstand the heat of the stoke-hole in the tropics; but there is no doubt that very serious inconvenience would be caused to vessels in the Eastern trade if no Asiatic firemen were available. The whole subject to which my hon. Friend refers is engaging the attention of the Board of Trade and statistics are being prepared with a view to publication at an early date.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that all European sailors and firemen are anxious to do work in tropical or other waters in the Red Sea or in the Persian Gulf, and is my hon. Friend aware that there are places in England where if he put his nose in, it would melt like butter before the sun?