HC Deb 03 April 1928 vol 215 cc1756-7
1. Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

asked the President of the Board of Trade how many surveyors or inspectors are maintained by the Board for the purpose of inspecting, among their other duties, the living quarters of the crews of British merchant vessels; what action is taken by them for the purpose of enforcing the minimum standard of comfort for the crews contained in the revised instructions to surveyors issued by the Board in 1923; arid in how many cases during the calendar year 1927 did they succeed in bringing about improvements in the crews' living conditions, quarters, and accommodation?

The PRESIDENT of the BOARD of TRADE (Sir Philip Cunliffe-Lister)

The inspection of crew spaces is one of the duties of the Board of Trade survey staff, which numbers 198 in all. Any defects discovered are notified to the owner or agent, with an intimation that if the defects are not remedied the space will have to be added to the tonnage of the ship, and this procedure has the desired effect. It is not possible to give the number of cases in which improvements were effected.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the Sailors and Firemen's Union and the Maritime Board, representing shipowners, have always come to an agreement in regard to the accommodation of sailors on board British ships?


I think that is very largely true. Certainly it has always been my experience that, wherever defects have been brought to the notice of shipowners, practically in every case they have been attended to.