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Thursday, 31 October 1912

Senator RAE (New South . Wales) . - Suppose that the master of a foreign-going ship does not comply with the provision, but sails away some fine morning, how shall we be able to catch him and enforce the penalty? I have in my mind the case of tbe Papanui, which left this port without saying so much as "by your leave." She left in a very cheeky way, and the captain snapped his fingers at the authorities.

Senator Lt Colonel Sir Albert Gould -She was on a foreign register.

Senator RAE - But this provision specially deals with foreign-going ships. I shall be only too pleased if it can be enforced against a master who slips away without giving this necessary information. It seems rather a light fine, though, to provide for, in the event of his return.

Senator E J RUSSELL (VICTORIA) - There was no sneaking away in the case of the Papanui, because the authorities had a week's notice of her intention to leave this port.

Senator RAE - They ought to have blown her up.'

Senator St Ledger - If this measure had been in force then, the Papanui could not have got away ; that was the trouble.

Senator RAE - I am getting the information in driblets. Further, why should there not be a proviso, similar to that which appeared- in . the original Bill, as to ships engaged in the coasting trade? Take the case of a vessel which leaves Melbourne for New Zealand. If changes are made in the crew, and a wreck occurs afterwards, with loss of lives, the relatives of those who shipped on the vessel - perhaps at the. last moment - will, seeing that no record is kept, be at a loss to know what has become of them. It is not right, I think, to deprive any persons of the possibility of identifying those who have gone to sea in a ship, no matter how small she may be.

Senator Lt Colonel Sir Albert Gould - That an Australian-trade ship, not a foreign-going ship.

Senator RAE - I cannot gather from the Minister's explanation why the proviso should be confined to foreign-going ships only.

Senator Needham - The same remark applies to the passengers in a ship.

Senator RAE - The names of the pas- sengers, unless they are trying to get away incognito, are recorded in books, and sometimes published in the press.

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