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M. & J. TRACY, INC. v. THE LUCIJANA

September 11, 1942

M. & J. TRACY, Inc.,
v.
THE LUCIJANA; THE CRAIGSMERE



The opinion of the court was delivered by: CAMPBELL

CAMPBELL, District Judge.

This suit is brought by libellant, to recover damages alleged to have been suffered by the libellant's vessel, the "Craigsmere", being forced to go aground, to escape a collision with claimant's steamship "Lucijana".

The "Craigsmere" went aground about midway between the Easterly side of the Triborough Bridge and Deep Rocks on the Astoria shore, between 6.20 A.M., and 6.30 A.M. on February 10, 1942.

 The time given in each instance, in this opinion, is Eastern War Time, unless otherwise stated.

 The steamship "Lucijana", a single screw steamer 381 feet long, 51 feet 6 inches beam, 27 feet depth, and 4,062 gross tons, left City Island about 5 A.M. on that day, in ballast bound for a pier at Staten Island.

 A licensed Hell Gate Pilot was on the bridge, with the Chief Officer, and at times the Master of the vessel, and a seaman, member of the crew, was at the wheel, and there was a lookout forward.

 The morning was dark, but clear, and very cold, and the bridge was an open one.

 The "Lucijana" was a Jugoslavian vessel, and the language of that country was SerbCroatian.

 There were members of the crew who came from several countries, other than Jugoslavia, and there were a number of other languages spoken by the officers and members of the crew.

 The Master, Chief Officer, and the wheelsmen, who were on watch and at the wheel, between 4 A.M. and 8 A.M. on the day in question, spoke English. The orders were given by the Pilot in the English language, and at once repeated by the Chief Officer.

 The language of the Chief Officer, and the country of the vessel's registry, is SerbCroatian.

 The "Lucijana" left City Island at full speed, and soon thereafter, reduced to half speed.

 She proceeded down through Hell Gate.

 There was a little of what the Pilot described as sound flood tide, but which was described by other witnesses as ebb tide, when she left City Island, and there was still a little ebb tide left when she reached Hell Gate.

 The "Lucijana", after passing others, came down astern of the Tug "Flushing's" tow of four sand scows, on hawsers made up in two tiers, of two scows each, and, between the Hell Gate Bridge and Triborough Bridge, the "Lucijana" sounded one whistle and ...


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