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Wreck Report for 'Winston', 1895

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Unique ID:16713
Description:BOT Wreck Report for 'Winston', 1895
Creator:Board of Trade
Date:1895
Copyright:Out of copyright
Partner:SCC Libraries
Partner ID:Unknown

Transcription

(No. 5184.)

"WINSTON" (S.S.)

The Merchant Shipping Act, 1894.

IN the matter of a formal Investigation held at the Municipal Buildings, West Hartlepool, on the 1st and 2nd days of August 1895, before ROBINSON MURRAY and ROBERT LAUDER, Esquires, two of Her Majesty's Justices of the Peace for the Borough of West Hartlepool, assisted by Captains ALFRED PARISH and KENNETT HORE, into the circumstances attending the stranding of the British steamship "WINSTON," of West Hartlepool, off the east coast of Schleswig, in or about latitude 54° 45' 15" N., longitude 10° 0' 45" E., on or about the 23rd day of April last.

Report of Court.

The Court, having carefully inquired into the circumstances attending the above-mentioned shipping casualty, finds, for the reasons stated in the annex hereto, that the stranding was caused through want of due care on the part of the master in the navigation of the vessel, and that the master, George William Shadforth, alone is in default, and the Court suspends his certificate for three calendar months from the 2nd day of August 1895.

Dated this third day of August 1895.

 

(Signed)

R. MURRAY,

Justices.

 

 

ROBT. LAUDER,

 

We concur in the above report.

 

(Signed)

ALFRED PARISH,

Assessors.

 

 

KENNETT HORE,

 

Annex to the Report.

This was an inquiry into the circumstances attending the stranding of the steamship "Winston," of West Hartlepool, on the 23rd April last, near Pottloch, on the east coast of Schleswig, and was held at the Municipal Buildings, West Hartlepool, before Robinson Murray and Robert Lauder, esquires, two of Her Majesty's Justices of the Peace.

Mr. Dendy appeared for the Board of Trade, and Mr. Tilly represented the owners and master. The other officers appeared in person, but were not represented by counsel.

The "Winston," official number 72,654, is a British steamship of 1,190.19 tons gross and 743.14 tons registered tonnage, built of iron at West Hartlepool by Messrs. W. Gray & Co., in the year 1876. She is two-masted, schooner-rigged, 246.6 ft. long, 32.3 ft. breadth of beam, and 18.3 ft. depth of hold, and fitted with two compound surface-condensing engines, by T. Richardson & Sons, of 130 horse-power combined, the diameter of the cylinders being 30 and 57 ins. and length of stroke 33 ins. She is owned by Mr. Robert Jobson, of 84, Scarborough Street, West Hartlepool, and others (as set forth in the register), Mr. Jobson being designated the managing owner, and appointed as such on the 24th February 1892.

The "Winston" was fitted with two compasses, viz., a pole compass before the bridge by which the courses were set and steered and the vessel navigated, and a steering compass before the steering gear, which was hand gear, there being no steam; but this compass appeared, from the evidence, to be never used, and although it was immediately before the steering gear, which was on the upper bridge, the man at the helm always used the pole compass to steer by, the pole compass being about ten feet above the deck, and eight or ten feet before the wheel. Neither of these compasses had been adjusted by a compass adjuster since June 1892, and they were then adjusted by Mr. Emerson, of West Hartlepool, who supplied deviation cards. Neither these cards nor the subsequent deviation cards, supplied after the vessel stranded, were produced to the Court, as they are on board the vessel, which is now at sea, but the master stated that there was 3/4 of a point westerly deviation on the north-west courses on the 1892 card, and that there was more on the 1895 card, but how much more he could not remember. He also stated that he had taken no bearings to correct his compass on any point during the voyage in question, and that he had made no corrections or observations of the N.W. points since last summer, although the vessel had been laid up for some time in dock, and that he trusted entirely to the deviation cards of 1892.

The "Winston's" boats, life-buoys, and life-belts, were all in accordance with the Life-Saving Appliances Act, and the vessel, from the evidence, was well found and properly fitted and equipped for the voyage on which she was engaged.

The "Winston" left West Hartlepool at 10.30 p.m. of the 18th April last, bound to Flensburg, with a cargo of 1,572 tons of coal, and with a draught of water 18 ft. 4 in. aft and 18 ft. 2 in. forward. She was under the command of Mr. George William Shadforth, who held a certificate of competency as master, No. 09,967, and she had a crew of 18 all told, which allowed of three A.B.'s in the watch. On the 23rd April at 4.30 p.m. the beacon or red buoy with ball, off Doons Point, Langeland, was abeam, bearing N.N.E. magnetic, and at a distance, estimated by the eye, of about half a mile. The wind was then light from the southward with passing showers of rain. The course was set N.W. by W. 1/4 W. by pole compass, which the master considered equal to W.N.W. magnetic by allowing of a point westerly deviation. As the errors on that course had not been ascertained since the summer of 1894, and the vessel before leaving West Hartlepool had been laid up for three weeks with her head to the westward, there was an element of uncertainty in the compass courses, which called for extra caution on making the land. The order was given to the helmsman not to go to the northward of the course, to clear the Sneedorff Grund. The patent log which had been set at 10.20 a.m. off the Sprogo Island Buoy showed at 4.30 p.m. 50 miles. The vessel was going at full speed, a rate of eight miles per hour, and the course N.W. by W. 1/4 W by compass was continued until just before the stranding. At 7 p.m. the land of Angelon was sighted ahead, and extending to about two points on the starboard bow. The engines were stopped and soundings obtained in 13 fathoms. Without examining the log, and ignoring the fact that the land was showing two points on the starboard bow, the master hastily assumed that the soundings placed him, by the chart, 3 1/2 miles from the edge of the shoal, and continued on the same course direct for the land at full speed. Had he properly examined the chart he would have seen that there were soundings of 13 fathoms much closer to the shoal. The lead was not again used, The weather was clear enough to see a distance of about six miles. The lights in the lighthouses of Kegernœs and Skjoldnœs were not yet lighted. Shortly before 7.30 p.m. the helm was ordered hard-a-port, and when the vessel's head had come up to about N.W. by N. she struck and remained fast. The engines were put full speed astern, but were almost immediately stopped and not again moved. On sounding round the ship 14 or 15 ft. were found forward and 21 ft. aft. The pumps were put on, and were sufficient to keep the water from gaining in the engine-rooms, but the water increased in the fore hold. On the following day the "Adela" came to their assistance. A diver went down and found a rent 35 ft. long and 1 foot wide on the second plate from the keel on the port side, the rent extending from the peak into No. 1 tank. Cargo was discharged, and about 150 tons jettisoned. Salvage pumps freed the vessel of water, and on the 30th April the vessel was got off, the rent having been temporarily stopped by divers, and she was towed into Flensburg. According to the master the cost of repairs, salvage, towing, &c., amounted to 3,6001. The master stated that on the 25th April, two days after the stranding, at 10 p.m. he took bearings of the Lights Kegernœs and Skjoldnœs, the former bearing N. and by E. 1/4 E. by compass, equal to N. 1/2 E. magnetic, and the latter N.E. 1/4 E. by compass, equal to N.E. 1/2 N. magnetic. These bearings were taken by the pole compass, without sight vanes, and it is probable that the errors had altered since last ascertained in the summer of 1894, but assuming them to be correct they place the vessel only about 300 yards from the edge of the shoal, as laid down on the Admiralty chart corrected to May 1895, and only about 500 yards from the shoal as shown on the chart by which the master was navigating his vessel, placing her on both charts 4 3/4 miles N. 1/4 W. magnetic of Slimunde Lighthouse. Grey stones were subsequently found adhering to the ship's bottom, and grey stones are indicated on both charts at the spot above mentioned.

The Court therefore can entertain no doubt but that the shoal (and stones) on which the vessel struck is duly laid down on both the above-named charts, notwithstanding the certificate from the German Royal Marine Office, put in by the master, a translation of which is annexed hereto.

On the opening of the inquiry Mr. Dendy put in, and on the conclusion of the evidence submitted for the opinion of the Court, the following questions:—

1. What number of compasses had the vessel, were they in good order and sufficient for the safe navigation of the vessel, and when and by whom were they last adjusted?

2. Did the master ascertain the deviation of his compasses by observation from time to time, were the errors correctly ascertained and the proper corrections to the courses applied?

3. Whether proper measures were taken to ascertain and verify the position of the vessel at or about 4.30 p.m. on the 23rd April?

4. Whether at 4.30 p.m. on the 23rd April a safe and proper course was set and thereafter steered, and whether due and proper allowance was made for tide and currents?

5. Whether a good and proper look-out was kept?

6. Whether the lead was used with sufficient frequency?

7. Whether the vessel was navigated with proper and seamanlike care?

8. Where did the vessel strand, what was the cause of the stranding, and is the shoal upon which she stranded marked upon the Admiralty Chart?

9. Whether the master and officers are, or either of them is, in default?

Mr. Tilly having addressed the Court on behalf of the master, and Mr. Dendy having replied on behalf of the Board of Trade, the Court answered the questions as follows:—

1. The vessel was provided with two compasses, one, the pole compass, by which the courses were set and steered, ten feet above the upper bridge deck and eight to ten feet forward of the wheel, and one in a binnacle, just before the wheel, which was never used. The compasses appear to have been in good order, and were sufficient for the safe navigation of the vessel. They were last adjusted in June 1892 by Emerson, of West Hartlepool.

2. The master had not ascertained the deviation of his compass on the north-westerly courses since the summer of 1894, nor did he take any measures for doing so at any time on any courses during the present voyage. Prior to this voyage the vessel had been laid up some time at West Hartlepool, and for three weeks before sailing her head had been to the westward, which might have caused a serious error in the compass and rendered the deviation cards untrustworthy. The Court cannot therefore say that the errors were correctly ascertained, or that the proper corrections were applied to the courses.

3. At or about 4.30 p.m. on the 23rd April a single bearing was taken of the beacon off Dovns Point, Guldstav Grund, and the distance from it estimated by the eye, which for all practical purposes was sufficient to verify the position.

4. The course set at 4.30 p.m. on the 23rd April, and thereafter steered, was a safe and proper one until the land was sighted. No allowance was made for tide or currents, nor was there any evidence to show that any allowance was needed.

5. A good and proper look-out was kept.

6. The lead was not used with sufficient frequency after getting into 13 fathoms at 7 p.m. Had the lead been kept going, or even a single cast taken during the 25 minutes that elapsed between the sounding and the stranding, the master would have had sufficient warning that he was running into danger.

7. The vessel was navigated with proper and seaman. like care up to 7 p.m. on the 23rd April, but not after. wards. The master continued to approach the master continued to approach the land on the same course at the rate of eight knots per hour for 25 minutes after he got the sounding of 13 fathoms, having hastily assumed, and that without even examining the log, that the 13 fathom cast fixed his position 3 1/2 miles from the fringing shoal, whereas there are 13 fathoms also in other places within a mile or a mile and a quarter of the shoal. The fact that at 7 p.m. the land was visible two points on the starboard bow ought to have satisfied the master at once that the vessel was not in the position he assumed.

8. The vessel stranded on the shoal which fringes the shore about 4 3/4 miles N. 1/4 W. of Slimunde Lighthouse. The stranding was caused through want of due care on the part of the master in the navigation of the vessel. The Court is satisfied from the evidence before it that the shoal upon which he stranded is duly marked on the Admiralty Chart, and also on the chart used by the master in the navigation of the vessel.

9. The master, George William Shadforth, alone is in default, and the Court suspends his certificate for three calendar months from the 2nd day of August 1895.

 

(Signed)

R. MURRAY,

Justices.

 

 

ROBT. LAUDER,

 

We concur.

 

(Signed)

ALFRED PARISH,

Assessors.

 

 

KENNETT HORE,

 

Certificate from the German Royal Marine Office.

(Translation.)

As requested by Captain Shadforth of the English steamer "Winston," of West Hartlepool, it is hereby certified that his ship stranded on the 23rd April 1895, on the east coast of Angelus, south of Falshoft, and that in consequence of such stranding, on which the official inquiry has been held here, it appears without doubt that the ship got on to some stones in stranding, which are neither shown in the English Chart of Captain Shadforth nor in the German Sea Chart.

 

(Seal.)

Flensburg, 20th May 1895,

Royal Marine Office,

(Signed)

MUNZ(Y).

Issued in London by the Board of Trade on the 15th day of August 1895.

87089—48. 180.—8/95. Wt. 165. E. & S.

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