HC Deb 24 February 1971 vol 812 cc148-9W
Mr. Donald Stewart

asked the Lord Advocate why the courts of inquiry into the Fraserburgh lifeboat disaster and Edinburgh Royal Infirmary were conducted in Scotland under English procedures.

The Lord Advocate

The Fraserburgh lifeboat disaster occurred outwith territorial waters, and, therefore, the procedure under the Fatal Accidents Inquiry (Scotland) Act, 1895, which extends to deaths in Scotland only, could not competently be invoked. The court of inquiry which was held in Aberdeen was in accordance with the provisions of the Merchant Shipping Act, 1894, Part VI, under which the Board of Trade may in the United Kingdom direct a formal investigation into a shipping casualty of a British vessel.

The Lord Advocate is unaware of any inquiry into the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary which was conducted in Scotland under English procedures. The recent inquiry into the circumstances of the death of Miss Alexina Hamilton was directed by him in terms of the Fatal Accidents and Sudden Deaths Inquiry (Scotland) Act, 1906, and was conducted according to the forms and procedure prescribed by the Fatal Accidents Inquiry (Scotland) Act, 1895.

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