|Description:||Board of Trade Wreck Reports for 'Dallam Tower', 1889|
|Creator:||Board of Trade|
|Copyright:||Out of copyright|
(No. 3782.) "DALLAM TOWER." FINDING of the Marine Court of Inquiry, held at Singapore, on the 11th and 12th of March, 1889, to inquire into the loss, on the 18th of February, 1889, of the British ship "DALLAM TOWER," of Lancaster, official No. 54,541, 1,464 tons register, whilst on a voyage from Newcastle, N.S.W. to Probolingo in Java, with a cargo of coals. The Court having carefully considered the evidence in this case, finds:— 1st. That the British ship "Dallam Tower," commanded by John Charles Williamson, who holds a master's certificate of competency, No. 96,287, was lost by striking on the reefs to the southward of Cape Sloko on the eastern extremity of Java. 2nd. That her loss is attributable to the ignorance of the master as to the existence of any outlying reefs off that coast. According to the evidence, he shaped a course to pass one mile clear of Cape Sloko for the purpose of taking advantage of the land breezes that blow during the night, and placed reliance on the large-scale Admiralty Chart No. 934 corrected up to 1883 that he was working by, which shows a clear coast line without any outlying danger. Captain Williamson was also in possession of Finlay's Sailing Directions, and it is a pity that he did not more carefully peruse them. 3rd. The "Dallam Tower" appears to have been navigated with care up to the evening of her stranding, but the Court consider that, under any circumstances, one mile was too small a margin to allow for currents and baffling winds. 4th. Every endeavour appears to have been made to get the vessel off. All the available anchors had been lost, and she was no longer in a condition to float when she was abandoned. 5th. The Court would recommend that the attention of the hydrographer of the Admiralty be called to this case, with a view to the cancelling or correcting of the chart in question if this has not already been done. 6th. The Court is of opinion that the master of the "Dallam Tower" should not have approached so near the land at night time, but, taking into consideration that he was misled by Admiralty Chart No. 934, as to the nature of the coast, only admonishes him to be more careful in future. (Signed) S. LESLIE THORNTON, Magistrate of Police, President. C. Q. G. CRAUFURD, Master Attendant, A. C. BING, Nautical Master Mariner, Assessors. JOSEPH GRAY, Master Mariner, 58302—10. 110.—4/89. Wt. 30. E. & S.