HC Deb 29 November 1995 vol 267 c781W
Dr. Godman

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many foreign registered fish factory shops were inspected by officials of the Marine Safety Agency in each of the past four years; how many of these were judged to be inadequate; what action was taken against the masters and owners concerned; and if he will make a statement. [2041]

Mr. Norris

I have asked the chief executive of the Marine Safety Agency to write to the hon. Member.

Letter from R. M. Bradley to Dr. Norman A. Godman, dated 29 November 1995: The Secretary of State for Transport has asked me to reply to your question about the inspection of foreign registered fish factory ships. In the financial years 1993–94 and 1994–95, the Marine Safety Agency (MSA) carried out 86 and 189 inspections respectively of foreign registered factory ships. To date in 1995–96, the MSA has undertaken 87 inspections of such ships. The inspections are carried out throughout the herring and mackerel seasons by a small team of surveyors. A report describing the defects found and the action required to be taken is left with the master. A copy is also sent to the ship's flag state for follow-up action by them. More than 50% of the fish factory ships inspected have deficiencies which would result in detention if the ships were alongside, but the majority of fish factory ships are inspected outside a port where, currently, our powers of detention do not extend. Where factory ships with serious deficiencies have entered ports in the UK, the ship has been detained until the deficiencies have been rectified. The MSA has detained 43 fish factory ships since April 1993.