HC Deb 26 February 1914 vol 58 cc1937-8

asked the Postmaster-General whether his attention has been directed to the fact that the alleged grounding of the "Lusitania" in Queenstown Harbour on the 29th of December, 1907, was found on inquiry to have been caused by the default of a pilot named Martin; whether Martin was a special pilot specially assigned to the company at their request; and whether the company, in a letter dated 22nd February, 1908, informed the Cork Harbour authority that, in consideration of Martin's long service, they did not wish to do more than censure him for an error of judgment?

Captain NORTON

I am informed that the facts generally are as stated by the hon. Member, but I have no actual knowledge of the letter referred to.


Why is it that the Postmaster-General does not reply to a question of this importance?

Captain NORTON

Because the Post-master-General happens to be temporarily absent, and I am taking his place.


Was not this incident put down by the chairman of the Cunard Company, in his letter to the Postmaster-General of 19th June, to the difficulties of the harbour, and is it clear now that it was owing to the fault of the pilot, and what does the hon. and gallant Gentleman think of the chairman of the Cunard Company after that?

Captain NORTON

I should be sorry to give my opinion of the chairman of that or any other company.


Why have the Cunard Company only recently discovered that their larger steamers cannot anchor safely at Queenstown?

Captain NORTON

The hon. and gallant-Gentleman had better give notice.