THE NEW RULE CONCERNING LIFE BOATS
The supervising inspectors of steamboats have amended rule 13 relating to life boats, and it has been approved by the secretary of the treasury and ordered to take immediate effect. It provides that steam ferry boats of 50 tons burden and above must be supplied with life boats as in the judgement of inspectors will best promote the security of life on board such vessels in case of disaster, according to the average number of passengers carried per trip. A steamer making excursions under a permit must have at least one life boat and shall be equipped with other life boats or their equivalents, as in the judgement of the inspectors will best secure the safety of all persons in case of disaster. Passenger steamers must be equipped with life boats in proportion to their tonnage, as follows:
Steamers under 100 tons, 1 boat; between 100 and 200 tons, 2 boats; between 200 and 300 tons, 3 boats; between 300 and 400 tons, 4 boats; between 400 and 500 tons, 5 boats; between 500 and 1,000 tons, 6 boats; between 1,000 and 1,500 tons, 7 boats; between 1,500 and 2,000 tons, 8 boats; between 2,000 and 2,500 tons, 9 boats; between 2,500 and 3,000 tons, 10 boats.
All the boats must be of proper size and substantially built with reference to the trade in which the steamer is engaged; provided, however, that no steamer shall be required to have more lifeboats than sufficient to carry the passengers she is allowed by her certificate of inspection, together with her officers and crew.
A portion of the life boats required may be substituted by their equivalents in approved life rafts when, in the judgement of the inspectors, it can be done with safety. All life rafts must be rated according to their buoyancy and capacity as established by the rules of the board of supervising inspectors. All steamers hereafter built for the navigation of the northwestern lakes shall be equipped with life rafts in proportion of one at least to every two lifeboats required.