The Ashburton Guardian. Magna et Vertas et Prævalebit. SATURSAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 1890. OVERLOADING VESSELS.
The harbour-rnastei's at Auckland, Wellington, and Dunedin have been invested with authority to prevent a practice only too frequent of late years m the interprovincial and intercoloniol shipping trade. We refer to the dangerous practice of stowing cai'go on deck after every available inch of space has been occupied m the hold. The practice of deck-loading has been winked at for a long period by the shipping authorities, and agents and oaptains of vessels have consequently grown bold. Vessels have left port m many instances loaded to a point nearer the water's edge than is consistent with safety to property and life. This will not be permitted m future at three of the principal ports at least m the colony. The action taken at Auckland, Wellington, and Dunedin, is one worthy of imitation at other ports m the colony, and we hope soon to hear that the good example has been followed everywhere else. By far too many valuable lives have been lost m the past through the overloading of ships—to say nothing of the loss of property —and it is therefore necessary that constant supervision should be exercised Whether harbourmasters—r who are m the employ of Harbour Boards directly interested m a big tonnage being shipped away from their respective ports —are the best officers to be entrusted with the responsible functions of inspectors is perhaps open to question. Their position, as servants of Harbour Boards doing a big business with shippers and shipowners is not quite as independent as could be wished. A complaint from any one of these officers m regard to the loading of a vessel belonging to an influential company may lead at some time or other to dismissal—not m a direct but m a roundabout way. We would therefore rather see men m a more independent position entrusted with so important a function. The appointment of collectors of Customs at each port, or other qualified persons beyond the reach of all influence would, m outopinion, be preferable. However, it is better that even harbourmasters should see to this important matter than that it should go entire'y unheeded, as m the past. We would specially recommend the Lyttelton and Timaru H/irbour Boards to follow m the footsteps of the Boards before-mentioned, and appoint someone—be he harbourmaster or anyone else, —-to prevent vessels leaving port with more cargo than they are entitled to carry.
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The Ashburton Guardian. Magna et Vertas et Prævalebit. SATURSAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 1890. OVERLOADING VESSELS.,
Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2523, 20 September 1890