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Wednesday, 12 October 1910

Senator PEARCE (Western AustraliaMinister of Defence) . - Senator Turley has fallen into the same error as Senator Guthrie. If their argument were correct it would mean that the load-line is determined by the position of the deck-line. But that is not so. What the deck-line is for is to enable the Department to indorse on the certificates at what depth from that deck-line the load-line shall Be placed.

Senator Guthrie - That is the whole thing.

Senator PEARCE - If an alteration is made in the deck the deck-line is altered; but that is not a determining factor in deciding the load-line, as Senators Guthrie and Turley must admit. The determining factor in fixing the load-line is the mathematical calculation of the buoyancy of the ship. If that were not so, the load-line would have to be raised, simply because the deck-line was raised. Do not honorable senators see that the two things are mutually destructive ?_ If the position of the deckline determines the position of the loadline, then the buoyancy of the ship is hot taken into consideration at all. Senators Turley and Guthrie must be aware that in fixing the load-line the measurements of the ship have to be taken into consideration, and two ships of the same tonnage might have the load-line in two different positions. This proves that the load-line is fixed by something other than the deck-line. Honorable senators will find that in clause 223 it is provided that -

The centre of the disc shall be placed at such level as is approved by the Minister below the deck-line marked under or in accordance with this Act, and specified in the certificate given thereunder. ....

That is why we fix a deck-line. Having ascertained by mathematical calculation where is the line of buoyancy, we indicate on the certificate that so many inches below the deck-line the load-line shall be marked. If the deck is raised by some inches-

Senator Sayers - The load-line remains the same.

Senator PEARCE - The load-line remains in the same position, although the distance from it to the deck-line has been -altered. In the case quoted by Senator Guthrie the. distance between the load-line and the deck-line would be 4 feet instead of 3 ft. 6 in. That is all that would happen.