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Wreck Report for 'Maggie' and 'Inishtrahull', 1891

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Unique ID:16069
Description:Board of Trade Wreck Report for 'Maggie' and 'Inishtrahull', 1891
Creator:Board of Trade
Copyright:Out of copyright
Partner:SCC Libraries
Partner ID:Unknown


(No. 4151.) "MAGGIE" AND "INISHTRAHULL" (S.S.) The Merchant Shipping Acts, 1854 to 1887. IN the matter of a formal Investigation held at Judge Boyd's Receiver's Court, Four Courts, Dublin, on the 19th, 20th, 21st, 22nd and 23rd days of January 1892, before C. J. O'DONEL, Esquire, Chief of the Police Magistrates, Dublin, assisted by Captains THOS. DAVIES and EDWARD BROOKS, into the circumstances attending the abandonment of the sailing vessel "MAGGIE," of Dublin, after collision with the steamer "INISHTRAHULL," of Glasgow, off the Kish Lightship, Irish Sea, on or about the 29th December 1891. 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 "Maggie" was lost through being in collision with the s.s. "Inishtrahull," which collision was cause by the neglect of the second officer of the "Inishtrahull" in leaving the bridge without a competent officer in charge, and for which we suspend his certificate for two years. Dated this 23rd day of January 1892. (Signed) C. J. O'DONEL, Judge. We concur in the above report. (Signed) THOMAS DAVIES, Assessors. EDWARD BROOKS, Annex to the Report. This case was held in the Four Courts, Dublin, on the 19th, 20th, 21st, 22nd and 23rd days of January 1892, when Mr. Shiel, of the firm of Messrs. T. and D. Fitzgerald. appeared for the Board of Trade. Mr. Keating Clay, of the firm of Messrs. Casey & Clay, for the owner of the "Maggie," Mr. Hayes, of the firm of Messrs. Hayes & Son, for the owners of the "Inishtrahull," and Mr. William Scallan, of the firm of Messrs. John L. Scallan & Co., for the captain of the "Inishtrahull." The second mate of the "Inishtrahull" was not represented by any professional gentleman. Nine witnesses having been produced by the Board of Trade and examined, Mr. Shiel handed in a statement of the questions upon which the Board of Trade desired the opinion of the Court. Mr. Scallan having addressed the Court on behalf of the master of the "Inishtrahull," and the second mate having made a statement in his own defence, to which Mr. Shiel, on the part of the Board of Trade replied, the Court proceeded to give judgment on the questions on which its opinion had been asked. The "Maggie," whose official number was 59,245, was a British sailing vessel, built of wood in Free Port, Digby County, Nova Scotia, and was owned by William Wooldridge Robinson, who was the managing owner, She was brigantine rigged, her length being 111.5 ft., breadth 28.3 ft., depth 12.7 ft., and her registered tonnage, after certain deductions, 225.68 tons. She was generally employed in the coal trade between Dublin and the various coal ports in the Channel, and on this voyage was bound from Dublin to Garston. She left Dublin about noon on the 28th December, under the command of Christopher Wall, who holds no certificate. She had seven hands, all told, including the master. The weather when she left was clear, with a strong breeze from the W.N.W., and when out clear of the land the master set a course of E. by S. 1/2 S., so as to pass clear of the Kish Lightship. When about 1.15 p.m. the master saw a steamer about one point on the port bow, about 2 miles off, steering down towards him, when he went below, and in about 20 minutes the mate called him, staling that the steamer was coming down upon them, and that there was danger of collision. The master of the "Maggie" did not expect that the steamer would have run into him until she was was within two lengths of his vessel. He called all the hands up, and they all hailed the steamer to try and call the attention of the people on board, but could see no one. The course of the "Maggie" was continued without alteration all through, until the steamer ran into her port side, abaft the main rigging, cutting her down to the water's edge. The force of the collision knocked down the man at the wheel, and the master himself was severely shaken. All the crew, excepting the man at the wheel, climbed on board the steamer over the bows while the vessels were in contact, and the master ordered him to follow, remaining himself by the ship. When the master of the steamer appeared, the master of the "Maggie" asked him to take him in tow, to which the master of the steamer replied that it was perfectly useless, as he could see the water running into the "Maggie" through a hole broken in her side. In a few minutes the "Maggie" filled, and fell over on the starboard side, with the sails in the water. The master of the "Maggie" managed to got on the outside of the port quarter, and thus saved his life. The master of the steamer sent a lifeboat to his rescue, but as the sea was too high for the boat to come near the wreck, the master of the "Maggie" jumped into the water and swam to the boat, and was taken on board the steamer and landed at Waterford with the rest of the crew. What became of the "Maggie" eventually there was no evidence to prove, but as she had some 17 or 20 tons of iron ballast in her she must have foundered. The "Inishtrahull" is a British screw steamship, built of steel, in 1885, by D. & W. Henderson & Co., at Patrick, and is registered at Glasgow. Her official No. is 90,067, her length being 231.1 ft., breadth 33.1 ft., and depth of hold 15.1 ft. She has a flush deck, and is schooner-rigged. She is fitted with triple expansion engines (constructed by the builders of the ship), of 240 h.p. combined. She is owned by Messrs. Geo. Jardine Kidston and James Cuthbert Cott, of Glasgow, County of Lanark, the former being designated managing owner on 15th August 1885. Her gross tonnage is 1006.56 tons, and net registered tonnage 453.42 tons. The "Inishtrahull" left Glasgow on the 28th December 1891, bound for Waterford, under the command of Thomas Whipp, whose certificate of competency is 02,073, with a general cargo of about 325 tons. Her crew consisted of 25 hands all told, 8 of whom were seamen and 12 steerage passengers. She was in good order and condition in every respect. Her draft of water on leaving was 14.2 ft. forward and 15 ft. aft. All went well, and at 1 p.m. of the 29th the "Inishtrahull" had arrived off Lamboy Island, which was bearing about W.N.W., distant 15 to 17 miles. At this time it was blowing a strong breeze from the north-west, with considerable sea, and the weather was clear. At 1.40 p.m. the master relieved the second mate, Dugald McDonald, whose certificate of competency is 103,052, to get his dinner, and at 2 p.m. the second mate returned to the bridge. It appears that it was not the custom to have a look-out man placed forward on duty during the daytime, and the only look-out kept was by the officer of the watch. The master having given the course to the second mate, viz., S.W. 1/2 S. by compass, and instructions to keep a good look-out, now left him in charge and went below. About 20 minutes afterwards the second mate left the bridge and told the carpenter to go on the bridge and remain until he returned. About 2.30 p.m. the master came on deck, and seeing the carpenter on the bridge, asked him where the second mate was, and received the reply that he had gone down on the main deck for a few minutes. The master did not remain on deck until the second mate's return, but went below, leaving the carpenter in charge, being under the impression that the second mate would not be absent more than a few minutes. From the evidence, however, it appears that the second mate had gone to his cabin, and he did not return, but was actually in his room when the collision took place. The carpenter stayed on the bridge under the lee of the weather cloth on the starboard side, and could not have been keeping a good look-out. At about 2.50 p.m., he saw the "Maggie" for the first time, in dangerous proximity, crossing the bows from starboard, and called out excitedly to the man at the wheel to "hard over." The man at the wheel came out of the wheel-house. saw the "Maggie," put the helm hard-a-port, and rang the engine-room telegraph full speed astern, and immediately after the "Inishtrahull" struck the "Maggie," stem on, on her port quarter, just abaft the main rigging, cutting right into her. The crew of the "Maggie" succeeded in getting on board the steamer, with the exception of her master, who stuck to his ship: The master of the "Inishtrahull" had reached the bridge just when the collision occurred, and had ordered the engines full speed ahead to keep the vessels together. This enabled the crew of the "Maggie" to get on board. In a few minutes the vessels separated, and shortly afterwards the "Maggie" filled with water and fell over on her beam ends. The master was rescued by the steamer's boat. The following are the list of the questions upon which the Board of Trade desired the opinion of the Court:- 1. Whether proper discipline was maintained on board the "Inishtrahull"? 2. Whether her crew was sufficient for the safe navigation of the vessel? 3. Whether the master of the "Inishtrahull" took proper measures to ensure that the officers and seamen comprising the watches were at all times at their respective station? 4. Whether the master of the "Inishtrahull" was aware of the fact that previously to and at the time of the collision the bridge was in charge of the carpenter, and if so, whether the master was justified in permitting this? 5. Whether the master of the "Inishtrahull" should have remained on the bridge when he ascertained that the second officer was absent from his post? 6. Whether the second officer of the "Inishtrahull" was justified in leaving the bridge, there being nobody on it at the time except the man at the wheel? 7. Whether he subsequently gave over the charge of the bridge to the carpenter, and if so, whether he was justified in so doing? 8. Whether a good and sufficient look-out was kept on board both vessels? 9. Whether both vessels were navigated with proper and seamanliko care? 10. Whether the master of the "Maggie" was in default? 11. Whether the master of the "Inishtrahull" was justified in refusing to attempt to take the "Maggie" in tow, and whether, having regard to the safety of navigation, the master of the "Inishtrahull" was justified in leaving the "Maggie" abandoned in the channel in a water-logged condition? 12. Whether the master or the second officer of the "Inishtrahull" are, or either of them is, in default? In the opinion of the Board of Trade the certificates of the master and second officer of the "Inishtrahull" should be dealt with. To which the following answers were given:- 1. Having regard to the custom prevailing in the home trade, it does not appear that proper discipline was not maintained on board the "Inishtrahull." 2. The crew was sufficient. 3. The master of the "Inishtrahull" adopted the usual method of arranging the officers and seamet?? comprising the watches, and they were at all time expected to be at their respective stations. 4 and 5. The master of the "Inishtrahull" was certainly aware of the fact that previous to the collision?? the bridge was in charge of the carpenter, and th?? Court cannot justify him in having permitted this, eve?? for a short time in a passenger steamer, and it would?? have been more prudent for him to have remained on?? the bridge until the second officer returned. 6. The second officer of the "Inishtrahull" w?? decidedly not justified in leaving the bridge then, or ?? any other time during his watch, without being relieved?? by the master or chief officer. 7. He did subsequently give over the charge of the?? bridge to the carpenter. He was not justified in?? doing so. 8. There was a good and proper look-out kept on?? board the "Maggie." There was not a good and?? sufficient look-out kept on board the "Inishtrahull" o?? that occasion. 9. The "Maggie" was navigated with proper and?? seamanlike care, but having regard to the answer?? already given the "Inishtrahull" was not. 10. The master of the "Maggie" was entirely free?? from blame. 11. The Court considers that the master of the "Inishtrahull" did everything that he possibly could after the collision, and he considered it useless to take the "Maggie" in tow, as she had already fallen on her beam ends, was full of water, and expected every moment to go down. Under those circumstances, we consider he was justified in leaving the wreck. 12. We consider the master of the "Inishtrahull" seriously to blame in allowing the carpenter to remain in charge of the bridge, but regarding his general conduct in the navigation of the steamer, we do not hold that he was in default, therefore do not deal with the master's certificate. The second officer was most culpably in fault in leaving the bridge during his watch for a period of over half-an-hour without leaving ?? competent officer in his place, and the Court suspends his certificate for two years. The Court makes no order as to costs. (Signed) C. J. O'DONEL, Chief Magistrate. We concur. (Signed) THOMAS DAVIES, Assessors. EDWARD BROOKS, 66626-208. 180.-1/92. Wt. 30. E. & S.


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