§ 64. Mr. W. THORNE
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if he is aware that Henry James Matthews, a crane signalman, was killed in Holborn through a defective chain being used upon the crane; if he is aware that Frederick Johnson Parkes, a factory inspector, gave evidence at the inquest and stated that the links of the chain were very bad and that the metal was defective and had not been properly welded; and if he will cause the chains of all Scotch derrick cranes to be properly inspected before being used?
§ The SECRETARY of STATE for the HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. McKenna)
I have received a report from the factory inspector on this accident. There is no power at present to require the testing of chains before use, but I observe that in this case the chain, which was a new one, was certified to have been tested up to a weight of 6¾ tons. The inquiry before the Coroner is not yet concluded; he will have the best assistance the Factory Department can give, and I have no doubt he will thoroughly investigate this very serious matter.
§ Mr. W. THORNE
May I ask the right hon. Gentleman whether, in view of the fact that there is no power at present to require the testing of chains before use, he will seek Parliamentary powers for that purpose?
May I ask the right hon. Gentleman whether any certificate was issued when this particular chain was tested?
§ Mr. McKENNA
In the course of my answer I stated that in this case the chain was certified to have been tested up to a weight of six and three-quarter tons.
The point of my question is whether the people who certified 1856 that the chain was tested up to that weight are doing justice to the question at all, and whether they are doing their duty.