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Loss Of British Vessels Through Floating Mines

Volume 180: debated on Wednesday 7 August 1907

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To ask the President of the Board of Trade how many British vessels are known to have been lost through floating mines since the beginning of the Russo-Japanese War; what was the latest date at which a loss of a Britsh vessel from this cause is believed to have taken place; and whether there is reason to believe that other neutral and British vessels have been lost through this mode of warfare. (Answered by Mr Lloyd-George): Two British vessels have been reported to the Board of Trade as having been lost-through floating mines since the beginning of the Russo-Japanese War, viz., the barque "Lucia," of Shanghai, which was blown up with fifteen of her crew about ten miles south-east of Lantishan Point, China Sea, on the 10th September, 1904, and the steamer "Sobralense," of Hong Kong, which was sunk with eleven crew and ten passengers, eight miles off Port Arthur, on the 12th May, 1905. Two London steamers also were damaged by floating mines, viz. "Kashing," on 25th October, 1904, and "Ningpo," on 6th July, 1906. Nine neutral vessels, of which three were British, have been reported as missing on voyages in the East, but the causes of their loss are of course purely matters of conjecture.