HC Deb 02 May 1927 vol 205 cc1279-80

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether, in view of the finding of the court of inquiry into the loss of the steamer "Eastway," with 23 lives, to the effect that the registered manager was culpable and blameworthy in connection with her overloading, the Board of Trade proposes to institute proceedings against him for misdemeanour; whether, if the costs of the inquiry exceed the sum of £1,000, for which the registered manager has been made liable, the excess of such expenses will have to be borne by the taxpayer; and whether His Majesty's Government will introduce legislation to increase the punishment for the offence of overloading?


The question is being considered whether the evidence in the case of the "Eastway" is such as to justify proposing further proceedings. Wreck inquiries are conducted at the public expense, and any balance on the "Eastway" case would fall on the Vote. I will consider whether further penalties are necessary or desirable for the purpose of preventing overloading at ports abroad.