THE LONE STAR.
TIlE LoNE STAk}
(DiBtriet (Jourt, E. D. Ne:w York.
April 7, 1888.)
SALVAGE-SALVAGE SERVICES-VESSEL AT DOCK-FIRE.
The steam-ship Lone Star lay on the lower·side of pier 87. North river, New York, when fire broke out on the Wharf, 'which spread with great rapidity, until the steam-ship herself caught fire. Various tugs came to her and when the hawsers which fastened her to the pier were burned away, some of them drew her orit into the stream, where other tugs came along-side, and she was towed, water being pumped on her mean time, to the fiats at Weehawken. where she sank. and the fire was extinguished. Held, that the tugs were entitled to salvage. '
COMPENSATION DIFFERENT GRADES OF SERVICE -
The services rendered by the tugs to the steam-ship differed in degree. Hetd, that the most important service was rendered liy the tug Pioneer, which the line on the Lone· Star by which she was towed ont from the burning pier into the river. To her was awarded $1,800 as salvage.$eld, f'Urrther., t;hat other grades 'of salvage services were rendered by the tugs which Rssisted in towing the steam-ship to-the fiats, and by the tugs which pumped water on the fire. To these tngs various sums, from $1,000 to $250; were· awarded.
SAME-IRON VESSEL-VALUlt OF SALVORS' SERVICES-BASIS OF TION. ,
The Lone Star was an. iron steam-ship. She was so much damaged by this fire that she was sold as a wreck. If she had received no assistance she would have been sunk in her slip, and would have been raised and sold ,as old iron, Held, that in ascertaining the vaLue :to th,e ship-owner the services rendered by: the salvors, the amount that the owners would have realized from her sale as old iron, if she had so sunk, should be deducted from tbe proceeds 'of her sale as a wreck. For tbepurposes of tbis computatiqn of salvage, sucb amount saved to her owners was found tobe from $22,000 to $29,000. The.total . award to the tugs was $8,850.
In Admiralty. Libels for salvage. Elevenditferent Eluits were brought against the wreck of the steam.ship Lone Star for salvage services rendered to her in the fire at Morgun's Line pier, in February, 1887. The suits were consolidated 011 motion. Alexander &: Ash, for Howard. Wing, Shoudy &: Putnam, for Kinny, Love, and Chapman. Wilcox, Adams &: Macklin, for Bridges. Butler, Stillman &: Hubbard, for McCaldin. Anson B. Stewart, for Hofman. Edward McCarthy, for Hicks and Sullivan. (]harle8 H. Tweed and R. D. Benedict, for the LoneStar.
J. This is a. consolidated action to recover salvage compensation for. services rendered b:r 12 different steam-tugs to the steamer Lone on the occasion of the at the pier of the Morgan Line, ill the North river, which occurred on the 28th ,day of February, 1887. The firebroku out upon a lighter loaded with cotton lying at the onter end of pier 37. The pier was a covered pier" and its shed was full· of cotton and other goods. . 'fhe tide was ebb, and agalew9.s blowing from the north-west.
lReported by EdwardG. Benedict, Elsq., of the New York bin'.
The steamer Lone Star was fast by hawsers to the lower side of the pier, her bow being about 200 feet inside the outer end of the pier. She had no ca.rgo on board. Shortly after the fire broke out the steamer became in flames, and all on board left. In time the fire burned off the hawsers by which she was fast to the dock, and, under the influence of the strong wind and ebb-tide she would then have drifted across the slip, and beyond the reach of assistance, had she not been at OIice towed out of the slip. This was done by tugs, requested to perfornl the service by the superintendent of the pier, then present. One of the tugs which towed the steamer out was the Pioneer. This tug, in anticipation of the burning of the fastenings of the steamer, placed herself along-side, and sent a deckhand named Bridges on board the steamer, at considerable personal risk, who made fast on the steamer's bow a line hauled by him from the Pioneer.' At this time the fire was furious on board the from the steamer, so that the PJ,cster of the Pioneer required an superintendent of the pier that means of escape would be furnished to Bridges. when the Pioneer should move away from the stea.merin order to tow her. As' soon as the fastenings of the steamer burned off,the Pioneer, being fast to her by a line from her bow, began to move her out of the slip. In rendering this service she was aided by the steam-tug Missisquoi, whioh tug, at the request of the Pioneer, made fast along-side of her after the steamer began to move, and with her towed the steamer out of the slip. At the same time,ibaft of the Pioneer, under the steamer's port quarter, was the tug Harry Roussel. This tug, at some time hefore the steamer began to move, had made a line fast to the steamer, and began to throw water into her through one of the dead-lights. She had also aline to the lighter Angeline Anderson, which lighter was loaded with cotton, and on fire. The tugs Missisquoi and Pioneer were sufficiently powerful to tow the steamer, ,out of the slip, and to a place where she could be beached, but shortly after, they reached the mouth of the slip the towing line of the Pioneer was cut by the of the steamtug Amerir,;a, (who, by the way, makes no claim to salvage in this aCtion,) and thereby the steamer was at once placed in peril of going upon the Guion dock, pier 38. In fact, beforEl another line, could be got to her, she did touch that dock, without, however, doing or receiving damage. As soon as pOBsible after the Pioneer's line parted, another line was got on the steamer from the steam-tug Runyon. This tug, aided by the tugs Reba, Missisquoi, Myers, and Coffin, towed her to Weehawken, where she was beached. During this time the steamer was burning furiously. --"her forecastle all roaring with fire, I' as the superintendent says,-and she was deluged by water thrown from various tugs which came alongside as soon asahe was clear of the slip, and continued to pour water upon her, until the fire was extinguishe,d at Weehawken. The damage done to the steamer was flO great that it WM thought .undesirable to attempt to repair her, and she was accordingly sold in her damaged 'condItion at it"ction, and brought the sum of $37,500. That an important salvage service was rendered on this occasion has 110t been deniedj but a controversy has arisen in regard to the .extent and
THE LONE STAB.
yalue of the services rendered by the respective tugs, and the amount of property saved to the ship-owners by the exertions of the salvors. In determining these questions it will be convenient to consider in the first place the amount of money saved to the ship-owner by the exertions of the salvors. It is conceded that the steamer was so injured by the fire as to render it proper to sell her as a wreck, and that the proceeds of her sale were $37,500. This sum, the salvors claim, should be taken to be the value of the property saved, in compnting the amount of the salvage award. But in a case like this, where the only danger was of fire, and where the vessel, being of iron, would not be wholly destroyed by fire, and where the vessel, if she had received no assistance, would certainly have been sunk in the slip, and as certainly have been raised therefrom as old iron, it seems to me proper in ascertaining the value to the ship-owner of the services rendered by the Elalvors, for the purpoEle ordllterinining the amount of salvage to be awarded, to deduct from the proceeds of the sale afthe steamer as a wreck the amount that her oWllers would have realized from her sale as old iron if she had burned and sunk in the slip.' It is not necessary for the purpose of the computation il) hand to determine with accuracy the amount thus saved to the owners of this steamer. It is safe to consider that amount to be somewhere from $22,000 to $29,000. The case, therefore, is not one where amount of the salvage 81warcl is enhanced by the. large value of the .property The risk to which this property wa3 exposed is next to be considered. The steamer was all on fire. Several tugs applied to by the superiotendent to go into the slip r.efused to do so. If aid had been refused by the tugs that did go into the slip, it is highly probable, although not perhaps actually certain, that all that was eombustible in the steamer would have burned, and the hulk sunk in the slip. It is hardly a case of derelict property saved to the ship-owner, but the ship-owner was in such great danger of losing from $22,000 to $29,000 that that sum m,ay be considered as representing the value to the owner of the steam.er oithe services in question· .Next will be considered the extent and value of the services rendered by these various tugs, and I remark first that I consider the case one of continuous salvage service from the time the steamer began to move out of the slip until the fire was extinguished at Weehawken, participated in by different tugs at different times and under different circumstanceEl. These services may well be divided into three classes: First. Services rendered in moving the vessel from the burning pier out of the slip. These I consider the most important services rendered on this occasion, and they were attended with some danger to the tugs engaged. Second.. 3ervices rendered in towing the steamer after she had been towed out of the slip, -ancI the Pioneer's line was cut, until she was beached at Weehawken. These services were attended with little or no danger to the .tugs, and many other tugs were present ready and willing to tow steamer, the services differing little in character from ordinary . . T'lird. Services which consisted in pumping water to extinguish the nre. This was a necessary service to prevent the from sinking.