HC Deb 24 April 1913 vol 52 cc556-8W

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty the date that the tender for the R.F.A. oil-tank "Burma" was originally received from the Greenock and Grangemouth Dockyard Company; the date when the order for the R.F.A. oil-tank "Burma" was provisionally placed with the Greenock and Grangemouth Dockyard Company; the date when the building of the "Burma" was commenced; by whom the "Burma" was designed; the extent of the responsibility of Lloyd's Register for anything beyond the requirements of Lloyd's Register itself for classification purposes, and the name of the Lloyd's surveyor or surveyors who superintended; whether any other person was appointed to assist the Admiralty in the superintendence of the building of the "Burma," and, if so, who and in what capacity; whether the size and weight of the anchors and cables and windlass was considerably in excess of the size and weight required by Lloyd's Register, and, if so, was this excess and weight in accordance with Lloyd's requirements; whether is was necessary to put about 150 tons of ballast in the "Burma" after launching for purposes of stability, and, if so, whether such ballast was included in the original contract and whether it was put owing to Lloyd's Register requirements; whether Lloyd's Register was responsible for the necessity of putting in such ballast, and, if Lloyd's Register was not responsible, who was; and whether any protest was received by the Admiralty from Lloyd's Register or from any other person as to the ballast being put in before the liability for such ballast had been settled?


The original tender for R.F.A. "Burma" was received on the 12th October, 1909, and the order was placed (provisionally) on a revised tender on the 8th April, 1910. The actual date when building was commenced is not known. The vessel was designed by the builders, and was built under the special survey of Lloyd's Register, who supplied a special certificate that the whole of the work covered by the specification was satisfactorily completed. The building was not superintended by Lloyd's surveyors; the work of Lloyd's Register was that of survey as stated above, the surveyors concerned being Mr. E. J. Tierney and the late Mr. C. M. Smith. The vessel was built under the general cognisance of the Admiral Superintendent of the Clyde District, assisted by a staff of officers. The requirements as to anchors, cables and windlass were formulated by the Admiralty to suit the special service of the vessel, and are in excess of what would be required by the rules of Lloyd's Register for a mercantile vessel of the same dimensions. It was decided by the Admiralty during the completion of the vessel to place 150 tons of ballast on board in order to reduce the amount of ballasting by filling the empty oil tanks with water, which is always necessary in vessels of the "Burma" class in certain conditions. The placing on board of this ballast was not due to the requirements of Lloyd's Register nor was Lloyd's Register responsible. The builders considered that this ballast was outside the original contract, and the Admiralty ultimately paid for it as an extra.

Forward to