§ 64. Mr. JOWETT
asked the President of the Board of Trade if his attention has been drawn to the Report of the last annual meeting of the Merchant Shipping Guild and the criticism therein contained 416 on the loading of ships under the Merchant Shipping Act as affected by the load-line tables of 1906; whether he is aware that last year over 3,000 seamen lost their lives on British ships, this being equal to a death rate of 1 in 76 as compared with 1 in 106 and 1 in 112 for the two immediately preceding years, respectively; and, if so, what is he going to do in the matter?
The question of the assignment of load-lines to ships has been under my consideration for some time, and as I have already announced, I propose to appoint a Committee to advise as to the instructions to be given to the British delegates at the forthcoming International Conference on Load-Line, and for that purpose to inquire whether any changes are desirable in the freeboard tables as revised in 1906. The number of deaths of seamen from all causes, including disease, was as stated by my hon. Friend.