- Project Runeberg -  A practical guide for Russian consular officers and all persons having relations with Russia /
276

(1916) Author: Alfons Heyking - Tema: Russia
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276

SHIPWRECK AND DAMAGE. P. vi., Сн. xx.

§ 327.
Shipwreck,
Finnish
ships.

(See § 346.)

§ 328.
Average
assistance
of the
Consul to
ship’s agent.
(See § 334.)

§ 329.
Damage to
ship,
Consular "
Protocol."

§ 330.
Jettison.

§§ 327, 328,

329, 330.

In all such cases, and in the adjustment of claims or disputes
arising out of them, the Consul acts as the official representative of
the Imperial Russian Government, and in no other capacity ; he is,
therefore, expressly forbidden to accept any other power or
authorisation.

Elective Consular Officers are required to report to the State
Consular Officer of their district, and the State Consular Officers to the
Section of Commercial Shipping, all cases of shipwreck, stranding, or
any other accident to Russian ships occurring in their district, and
to mention what measures have been adopted by them. Cases
relating to Finnish ships are reported by State Consuls to the
Governor-General of Finland.

The Consular Regulations distinguish between those cases in which
the owners or charterers of the vessel or cargo have agents or
representatives on the spot to watch the interests involved, and those in
which there are no such agents.

i. In the former case, the Consul avoids all direct participation
in the proceedings in average and the settlement of claims, and
confines his offices to giving the agents all the assistance and advice in
his power. At the same time the interests of Russian mercantile
shipping require him to make a prompt and thorough investigation
of all the circumstances connected with the accident. The action
of the Consul in an inquiry of this nature is essentially of an
administrative character and has nothing in common with either a suit at
law or a sea protest.

After taking the depositions of the captain and the crew, the
Consul must draw up a " protocol," stating all the circumstances of
the accident, specifying the nature of the loss or damage and giving
any other details which may be essential. He must assure himself
of the actual existence of damage and of the correctness of the
depositions made before him. The "protocol" must be signed by
the captain and the crew, or at least by the chief members thereof,
and countersigned by the Consul.1

As the log book on Russian ships must be written in Russian,
and as the aforesaid protocol is based on the log book, it follows that
the protocol must be written in the Russian language. Elective
Consular Officers must see that this is done.

If, in order to save the ship and the remainder of the cargo, the
captain is compelled to jettison a portion of the cargo, he must draw
up an exact report of all the circumstances, which must be signed by
himself and the chief members of the crew, and produced, if in foreign
waters, to the nearest Consular Officer. He must make an exact list
of the goods jettisoned, showing their quantity, description and value,
and must state whether all the instructions contained in Arts. 447
and 448 of the Russian Trades Regulations have been observed.

These articles are as follows :—

If, in order to avoid danger or to save the ship or the cargo from
shipwreck or destruction, it be necessary to cut away the anchor,
ropes, masts or rigging, the captain must, if possible, strike the first

1 Cons. Reg.. Arts. 61 and 62.

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