104. Captain TERRELL
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether Trinity House purchased dissolved acetylene cylinders used in gas-buoy lighting from a Swedish-German company, known as the Aga, during the War when cylinders of as good, or better, type could be supplied by a British manufacturer; whether the Trinity House still buys these cylinders from the same firm; and whether he will consider the whole question of thus making these purchases abroad.
§ Mr. BRIDGEMAN
I am informed by the Trinity House that, after trial of different systems of dissolved acetylene lighting in the early days of the War, they decided that the A.G.A. system, owned by the Gas Accumulator Company of London, was the only one suited in all respects for buoy-lighting, and, in consequence, the gas cylinders which are specially adapted 650 for use with this apparatus were also supplied by that company. It is of the highest importance that the cylinders used should be safe in handling, as they are at times unavoidably subjected to rough usage. The cylinders supplied by the company withstood all the tests to which they were subjected, but the cylinders of other companies did not, and the latter were considered unsafe for maritime purposes, the former being preferred not only on the essential ground of safety, but also because they possessed the further important advantage of a larger gas capacity. The Trinity House further state that, while the parent house of this company is in Stockholm, they are informed that it is a purely Swedish concern without any German connection. They have at present on order from the company, cylinders now made in England, and they understand that cylinders of the type used by them are also manufactured in this country and exported to Sweden. In the circumstances stated, I do not propose to take any action.