HC Deb 22 October 1912 vol 42 cc1926-7
76. Mr. MORTON

asked the Lord Advocate whether he can say why no inquiry has been held concerning the drowning of William MacAngus, fisheman, at Helmsdale Harbour, Sutherland, in August last, whilst employed with the pilot in putting out a steamer from the harbour at the centre quay on a dark night while the harbour was unlighted?


An investigation was made by the Procurator-Fiscal. The body of the man MacAngus has never been recovered; and the evidence available as to the circumstances under which he disappeared is so scanty that an inquiry under the Fatal Accidents Acts would serve no useful purpose.


Does not this case come within the Fatal Accidents (Scotland) Act?




Is the right hon. Gentleman not obliged to hold an inquiry?



84. Mr. MORTON

asked the President of the Board of Trade who is responsible for enforcing the lighting of the harbour at Helmsdale, Sutherland; why the proper lighting of the harbour is not enforced; and whether he is aware that a man employed in connection with the harbour recently lost his life on a dark night while putting out a steamer, when neither the head-light at the harbour nor the quayside lights were lit?

The PRESIDENT of the BOARD of TRADE (Mr. Buxton)

Under the Helmsdale Harbour Order, 1901, this harbour was transferred from Trustees to the Duke of Sutherland, and I understand that, in pursuance of Section 32 of the Helmsdale Harbour Order, 1890, the Duke has leased the rates on certain conditions to Messrs. George Couper and Company. The provisions as to lighting are contained in Section 46 of the latter Order and are to the effect that the undertakers shall at the outer extremity of the works exhibit for all or any part of the time from sunset to sunrise and according to the requirements of the traffic such light or lights (if any) as shall from time to time be directed by the Commissioners of Northern Lighthouses. I am making inquiry as to what directions have been given and whether effect is given to them. As regards the latter part of the question, I understand that litigation is pending in reference to the matter referred to.

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