HC Deb 11 April 1956 vol 551 cc178-9
20. Mr. Knox Cunningham

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation whether he is aware of the judicial opinion expressed in the case of the "Landeer," reported in (1955) 2 Lloyd's List Rep. 554, that the limit of liability in merchant shipping cases was fixed nearly 100 years ago when the value of money was greater, that the size of a limitation fund may be quite out of line with the realities of a case, and that the monetary limits are overdue for review; and whether he will undertake a review preparatory to legislation.

Mr. Watkinson

Yes, Sir, I am aware of the judicial opinion expressed in this case, but in regard to the second part of the Question I have nothing to add to the replies given by my hon. Friend the Joint Parliamentary Secretary on 8th February last.

Mr. Knox Cunningham

Can my right hon. Friend give any indication of the date of the conference for the proposed convention on the subject of limitation of liability? If he cannot give that date, will he assure the House that Her Majesty's Government will take the initiative in calling such a conference and getting some action on this point?

Mr. Watkinson

I cannot say that at this moment, but I will write to my hon. Friend and try to give some information.

Mr. Awbery

Has not the time come for a comprehensive review of merchant shipping laws, especially those affecting the safety of life at sea? Will the Minister examine the matter?

Mr. Watkinson

That hardly arises from this Question, but I will look at it.

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