The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Inland Marine Insurance
The Railway and Marine World (Toronto, ON), March 1911, p. 279

Full Text

A conference with underwriters took

place in New York Feb. 3 at the offices

of Clubb and Sons, underwriters, at

which the Canadian Lake Protective Association

was represented by Frank

Plummer, President; A. A. Wright, Toronto, and W. S. Wiley, Port Arthur. L.

Henderson, Montreal Transportation Co.,

and F. King. Counsel, were snowbound

and unable to reach New York in time.

Representatives of Johnson and Higgins,

insurance brokers, and of F. Hermann,

underwriter, were present. The Canadian

Lake Protective Association's cause

was well presented and favorably received.

The failure of the Great Lakes Protective

Association to take any measures

to exercise control over the navigation

of its members' boats was commented

on as one of the main reasons

for the formation of the Canadian Association,

which latter organization aims

to make the master's certificate a pledge

of reasonable safety for the ship. The

agreement constituting the association

and the rules for masters and engineers,

which include written consent to the

penalty of dismissal, were explained, and

it was shown that any negligence on

the part of these officers would be dealt

with by a committee interested in enforcing

the regulations and free to act

independently of the embarassing claims

of the employe [sic] upon the sympathy of

his employer. It was explained that

through this committee a formal investigation

by the Dominion Wreck Commissioner

could always be secured, and

that in one way or the other the necessary

penalties could be imposed. The

important argument advanced, however,

was that the mere existence of the organization

and its regulations, with the

machinery for penalizing faults, would

have a distinctly beneficial result, as experience

had shown that where masters

were given positive instructions with severe

penalties attached, avoidable accidents

do not occur.

The representatives of the Canadian

Association asked that separate records

be kept of the premiums and losses on

vessels enrolled in that association, and

that insurance rates be fixed for its

members accordingly, without regard to

any other rates given on the lakes. In

this connection a further request was

made that losses on vessels sailing under

extended insurance should be dealt

with separately, and not considered in

the regular season's rates.

A request was also made for the appointment

of a separate representation

to look after Canadian business, so as

to relieve R. Parry-Jones, the Salvage

Association of London's representative

at Cleveland. Ohio. The appointment

might be made by the underwriters, or

by Mr. Parry-Jones, but the volume and

importance of the business and the necessity

for close supervision of repairs

to save unnecessary or improper charges

against the policy, demanded the appointment

of some one to attend exclusively

and independently to Canadian

affairs. The reasonableness of this

proposition could be seen in the light of

the facts that in 1899 there were only

some 10 Canadian vessels trading out

of Fort William and Port Arthur, while

in 1910 there were over 80.

The withdrawal of the Canadian

boats from the Great Lakes Protective

Association caused a good deal of discussion,

but it was made clear that the

Canadian organization was designed

primarily to fulfil the important functions

of the United States organization,

which that body was completely ignoring,

and that Canadian vessels could not

be expected to contribute towards unnecessary

work. Regarding the expense

of taking and advertising drafts of water,

etc., the Canadian organization

would be quite willing, however, to pay

its pro rata share, either by contribution

or by employment of additional service.

It may be that the assumption, by

the owner, of some small part of the

insurable risk on Canadian hulls, will

be required by the underwriters, but

doubtless this will not be considered at

all a serious difficulty.

The whole question is now in the

hands of underwriters, and Mr. Chubb

is taking it up with the underwriters

in London, Eng., as well. On the whole

the members of the Canadian deputation

have every reason to believe that

their mission will prove successful, and

that the Canadian Lake Protective Association

will receive due recognition,

and in due course begin to reap the

benefits it expects.

Media Type:
Item Type:
Date of Original:
March 1911
Language of Item:
Copyright Statement:
Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Inland Marine Insurance