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PROPOSED GROUPING OF SUBJECTS FOR CONSIDERATION BY COM

MITTEES OF THE INTERNATIONAL MARINE CONFERENCE.

1. Rules of the road and signais-General Divisions 1 and 8.
2. Saving of life and property from shipwreck by operations from

shore-General Division 5, subdivision No. 2.
3. Construction and equipment of vessels, and saving of life and

property from shipwreck at sea-General Divisions 2, 3, and

4, and subdivision No. 1 of 5. 4. Qualifications of officers and seamen-General Division 6. 5. Steam lanes—General Division 7. 6. Official inquiries into shipwrecks and other casualties-Gen.

eral Division 5, subdivision No. 3. 7. Transmission of warnings and information, buoys, etc.-Gen.

eral Divisions 9, 10, 11, and 12. 8. Permanent Maritime Commission-General Division 13. All of which is respectfully submitted.

S. R. FRANKLIN,

Rear-Admiral. W. P. SAMPSON,

Commander, U.S. Navy.

S. I. KIMBALL,
General Superintendent Life-Saring Service.
JAS. W. NORCROSS,

Master Mariner.
John W. SHACKFORD,

Master, Merchant Marine. WILLIAM W. GOODRICH,

Counsellor-at-Lav.

WASHINGTON, Monday, December 2, 1889. 11 o'clock a. m. The Conference was called to order at 11 o'clock a. m., Rear-Admiral Franklin in the chair.

The PRESIDENT. The first business in order this morning will be the reports of committees. If there are no reports to be made, the next order of business will be extra amendment No. 59. The Secretary will please read extra amendment No. 59.

The amendment is as follows:

"All steamers under way may carry an additional white light, similar to the present light mentioned in Art. 3 (a). These lights must be so placed in line with the keel that one must be at least twenty fert higher than the other, and should be in such a position with reference to each other that the lower light should be forward of the upper one, and for a vertical distance of twenty feet between them there should be a hori. zontal distance of thirty feet, or in the proportion of two to three, as near as practicable."

Captain SHACKFORD (United States). Mr. President, I find that there is some opposition to this proposed amendment among the delegates, and I would like to have permission to change the amendment, in the manner in which I have it drawn up here.

The PRESIDENT. The Secretary will please read the amendment as changed.

The amendment as changed is as follows:

“All steamers under way may carry an additional white light, similar to the light mentioned in Article 3 (a). These lights must be so placed in line with the keel that one must be at least 15 feet higher tban the other, and should be in such a position with reference to each other that the lower light shall be forward of the upper one. The vertical distance between these lights must be less than the horizontal distance.

Mr. HALL (Great Britain). Mr. President, we understand the reasons for altering this amendment, and on behalf of my colleagues and myself, we give our hearty support to this proposition. There were difficulties in the way of dealing with the amendment as it had been carried originally by the Conference; but now these difficulties appear to be surmounted; and, having regard to the evidence which has been given to us of the great use of range lights in American waters, we cordially support the proposal that range lights should be tried not only in American waters, but in all waters. Upon these grounds, we beg to support the amendment which is now before the Conference.

Captain SHACKFORD (United States). Mr. President, the amendment as it is at present has also the cordial indorsement of the delegate from Germany, Captain Mensing, who I see is not present this morning.

The PRESIDENT. If there be no objection to substituting the last proposed amendment of the delegate from the United States, it will be considered the amendment which is now before the Conference. There seems to be no objection to the substitution, and the question will be upon the substituted amendment.

The question was put to the Conference upon the adoption of the substitute for amendment No. 59, proposed by the delegate from the United States, and the substituted amendment was carried.

The PRESIDENT. Extra amendment No. 60 is next in order. The Secretary will please read it.

Extra amendment No. 60 is as follows:

“All vessels under way shall keep out of the way of coupled steamers engaged in trawling."

Captain VARELA DE TORRES (Spain). Mr. President, as Lieutenant Vega de Seoane is not here, I want to support this amendment, and I think that it will be scarcely necessary for me to say more than a few words in regard to it. Every man who has been at sea knows perfectly well that it is impossible for two steamers which are coupled together and are trawling to keep out of the way of other vessels; and on that account we think that these steamers must be treated as ships which can not get out of the way. For that reason I think that such steamers as are described in this amendment should have the same privilege as a sailing ship.

Mr. GOODRICH (United States). Mr. President, I think we have fully disposed of the subject of giving these vessels the right of way, and I think the Conference has practically settled this question. Of course it is well to have discussion upon it if it is deemed desirable to have the matter brought up again before the Couference, but, as I understand it, that subject has been practically disposed of under the amendment of Dr. Sieveking. My idea is that the simple fact that steamers are coupled together makes no difference. It is reversing the whole rule of the road to compel a sailing vessel to keep out of the way of a steamer.

Mr. HALL (Great Britain). Mr. President, I quite agree with the learned delegate from the United States that if we were to adopt this amendment we should be reversing completely the rule of the road at sea, that a steamer should keep out of the way of a sailing vessel. If a steamer chooses to couple herself for the purpose of trawling, let her do it and take the responsibility and inconvenience of it; then, if it be necessary, she must let go of the trawl to keep out of the way. I do not think we can possibly say that a sailing vessel should keep out of the way of steamers when they are coupled together. As I say, it

would be a very strong reversal of the ordinary principles. I am certain that the honorable delegate will see himself that if we should adopt this amendment it would open the doors to making very great alterations in what is the accepted principle of the rules of the road at sea, that steamers must keep out of the way of sailing vessels.

The PRESIDENT. The question is upon the amendment of the delegate from Spain.

Mr. HALL (Great Britain). Mr. President, perhaps I may point out that we refused to give this concession to steamers towing, and there are far more cases of steamers towing than of steamers trawling. The Conference decided by an overwhelming decision that they would not give such a privilege to a vessel towing.

The PRESIDENT. Is the Conference ready for the question ? The amendment will be read again.

The amendment is as follows:

6 All vessels under way shall keep out of the way of coupled steam. ers engaged in trawling."

The PRESIDENT. Is the Conference ready for the question ?

The question was put to the Conference upon the adoption of extra amendment No. 60, and it was lost.

The PRESIDENT. The next business in order is the new section proposed by the delegate from the United States. It will be read,

The proposed new section is as follows:

“In every case of collision between two vessels it shall be the duty of the master or person in charge of each vessel, if and so far as he can do so without danger to bis own vessel, crew, and passengers (if any), to stay by the other vessel until he has ascertained that she has no need of further assistance, and to render to the other vessel, her master, crew, and passengers (if any), such assistance as may be practicable and as may be necessary in order to save them from any danger caused by the collision, and also to give to the master or person in charge of the other vessel the name of his owu vessel and her port of registry, or the port or place to which she belongs, and also the name of the ports and places from which, or to which, she is bound. If he fails to do so, and no reasonable cause for such failure is shown, the collision shall, in the absence of proof to the contrary, be deemed to have been caused by his wrongful act, neglect, or default."

Mr. KIMBALL (United States). Mr. President, this matter has been dealt with by the Committee on Life-Saving Systems and Devices, and I would suggest that it might be well to await the report of that committee before taking action upon it.

Mr. GOODRICH (United States). Mr. President, I have no objection to that. I call the attention of the delegates to the fact that in the fourth line from the bottom the word “or” should be “and,” so that it would read, and also the name of the ports and places from which and to which she is bound.” May I ask the chairman of the Committee on Life-Saving Systems and Devices when the report will be ready!

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