British Wreck Commissioner's Inquiry
Board of Trade's Administration
Draft Amendment of General Rules
(1) Boats. - All boats shall be constructed and properly equipped as provided by these rules, and shall be of such form and proportions that they shall have sufficient freeboard, and ample stability in a sea-way, when loaded with their full complement of persons and equipment.
All thwart and side seats must be fitted as low in the boat as practicable, and bottom boards must be fitted so that the thwarts shall not be more than 2 ft. 9 in. above them.
All boats and other life-saving appliances are to be kept ready for use to the satisfaction of the Board of Trade. Internal buoyancy apparatus may be constructed of wood, or of copper or yellow metal of not less than 18 oz. to the superficial foot, or of other durable material.
Section (A). A boat of this section shall be a lifeboat of the whaleboat form, properly constructed of wood or metal, having for every 10 cubic ft. of her capacity, computed as in Rule (2), at least 1 cubic ft. of strong and serviceable inclosed air-tight compartments, so constructed that water cannot find its way into them. In the case of metal boats an addition will have to be made to the cubic capacity of air-tight compartments, so as to give them buoyancy equal to that of the wooden boat.
Section (B). A boat of this section shall be a lifeboat, of whaleboat form, properly constructed of wood or metal, having inside and outside buoyancy apparatus together equal in efficiency to the buoyancy apparatus provided for a boat of section (A). At least one-half of the buoyancy apparatus must be attached to the outside of the boat.
Section (C). A boat of this section shall be a lifeboat, properly constructed of wood or metal, having some buoyancy apparatus attached to the inside and/or outside of the boat, equal in efficiency to one-half of the buoyancy apparatus provided for a boat of section (A) or section (B).
At least one-half of the buoyancy apparatus must be attached to the outside the boat.
Section (D). A boat of this section shall be a properly constructed boat of wood or metal.
Section (E). A boat of this section shall be a boat of approved construction, form, and material, and may be collapsible.
(2) Cubic Capacity. - The cubic capacity of an open boat, and of a deck boat of section (D) or section (E) shall be ascertained by multiplying the product of the length, breadth, and depth by 6, subject, however, to the following provisions: -
The length shall be measured from the foreside of the rabbet on the stem to the afterside of the rabbet on the stern post, and the breadth shall be measured from the outside of plank to the outside of plank amidships. The actual depth shall be measured from the top of the gunwale to the top of the bottom plank next to the keel, but the depth used in calculating the cubic capacity shall not in any case exceed 3.6 ft., and if the actual depth is equal to or less than 3.6 ft., the depth used in calculating the cubic capacity shall not exceed 45 percent of the breadth measured as indicated above.
If the oars are pulled in rowlocks, the bottom of the rowlock is to be considered as the gunwale in measuring the depth of the boat.
If any question is raised requiring absolute accuracy, the cubic capacity of a boat shall be ascertained by Stirling's rule; subject to the foregoing provisions as to depth.
(3) Number of Persons for Boats. -
(A) - Subject to the provisions of paragraph's (b), (c) and (d) of this clause the number of persons* an open boat of section (A) shall be deemed fit to carry shall be the number of cubic feet ascertained as in Rule (2) divided by 10, and the number of persons* an open boat of section (B) or section (C), or an open or decked boat of section (D) or section (E) shall be deemed fit to carry shall be the number of cubic feet ascertained as in Rule (2) divided by 8. The space in the boat shall be sufficient for the seating of the persons carried in it, and for the proper use of the oars.
(B) - An open boat of section (A) or section (B) or section (C) or section (D) or section (E), shall not be deemed to be fit to carry the number of persons ascertained as in paragraph (a) of this clause unless the boat is so constructed that it has a mean shear of at least half an inch for each foot of its length, and that the boat's half-girth amidships measured outside the planking from the side of the keel to the top of the gunwale is at least equal to nine-tenths of the sum of the boat's depth inside and half its maximum breadth amidships, and that the mean of the half-girths measured in the same manner at two points, one-quarter of the length of the boat from the stem and stern-post respectively, is at least equal to eight-tenths of the sum of the depth inside and half the maximum breadth amidships.
(C) - A decked boat of section (D) or section (E) shall not be deemed to be fit to carry the number of persons ascertained as in paragraph (a) of this clause, unless the top of the deck amidships is at a height above the water approved by the Board of Trade, when the boat is so loaded.
(D) - If the surveyor is doubtful as to the number of persons any open or decked boat is fit to carry, he may require the boat to be tested afloat with the intended number of persons on board.
(E) - The rules numbers 1, 2, and 3, as now amended, are not to be retrospective, and are to apply only to boats built after.