- Project Runeberg -  A practical guide for Russian consular officers and all persons having relations with Russia /

(1916) Author: Alfons Heyking - Tema: Russia
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CHAPTER VII.—Wages of Sailors, Fines, &c.

Experience has shown that, when sailors for one reason or another
are dissatisfied with their condition on board of a ship, they invariably
desert as soon as they have secured all the money that is due to them
as wages. In order to prevent this, captains of Russian ships are
permitted to postpone final settlement with their men until the return
of the vessel to a Russian port, where their contract expires. If,
therefore, fines are inflicted by the captain on members of the crew,
this question will only be of importance at the port where the sailors
receive their discharge, except in the case of special permission by the
Consular Officer. By giving or refusing permission to discharge
sailors the Consular Officer is enabled to exercise a strong influence
in the settlement of disputes about fines between the captain and
sailors of the crew of his ship. The following regulations must be
observed :—

On the arrival of a Russian vessel at the port of destination and
after safe delivery of the cargo, the master must pay the wages up
to date to all those of his men who during the voyage have performed
their duties zealously, obediently, and satisfactorily. If any one of
them is idle, disobedient, or in any way unsatisfactory, or of bad
behaviour, or is suspected of an intention to desert, the master is
entitled to withhold his pay for one month.1

The captain pays the men the wages due to them out of the sums
received by him as freight on the ship’s cargo.2

If the ship or cargo is lost, burnt, or otherwise destroyed before
the crew have received all the wages due to them, such wages cannot
be recovered by them.3 In all other cases, even of confiscation of the
ship, none of the crew can be deprived of their pay except in
consequence of misconduct.4

If one of the crew appears to be unfit for the duties he undertook
to fulfil, the master of the ship is at liberty to retain his wages till
the arrival of the ship at a port, and must then report the matter to
the authorities, giving proofs of the man’s incapacity ; but during
the voyage the man must fulfil his duties as far as possible—in return
for his food or whatever remuneration the master decides upon.5

The Maritime Code of Finland contains the following provisions
relating to the wages of captains and sailors serving on Finnish ships :—

Every seaman is entitled, when entering upon his duties, to an
advance of pay equivalent to one month’s wages, or, if he is engaged
for the voyage, to one fourth of the total amount of his wages. In
addition, every time he arrives at a port where more than one half
of the cargo is discharged he is entitled to an equal sum, provided
that the sums advanced do not exceed the wages due to him. The
monthly payments are calculated from the day on which the seaman
signs articles, except when otherwise expressly stipulated, and are

§231. [-Postponement-]
ment+} of final
of accounts
with sailors,

§ 232.
permitted to
wages for
one month.

§ 233.
cannot be
recovered if
ship is lost.

§ 234.
of sailors.

§ 235.

1 Trade Reg., Art. 280.
3 Ibid., Art. 285.

Ibid., Art. 287.

2 Ibid.. Art. 284.
4 Ibid., Art. 286.

§§ 231, 232,

233. 234.


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