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   QUEEN’S BENCH DIVISION (COMMERCIAL COURT) 5–7, 11–14, 21, 27 Mar c h; 14 J u n e  2013 ———— VERS L OOT DREDGING BV v HDI-GER L ING INDUSTRIE VERSICHERUNG AG(THE “DC MERWESTONE”) [2013] EWHC 1666 (Comm) B e for e  Mr J us t ice  P OPP L EWE LL   Insurance (marine) — Time policy — Institute Time Clauses Hulls 1983 — Institute Additional Perils Clauses — Perils of the seas — Inchmaree clause — Negligence of crew and repairers — Due diligence — Whether vessel unseaworthy — Measure of indemnity — Fraudulent claim — Fraudulent means and devices — Marine Insurance Act 1906, sections 39(5), 55 and 69. Th is   w a s  a cl a i m by  th e  a ssu r ed  o w n e r s  of th e  v essel    DC Merwestone  aga i n s t th e   de f  e n d ant h ull  an d  ma c h i n e r y   u n de r w r i t e r s  for d amag e  to th e  v essel , i n th e   su m of €3,241,310.60. Th e   de f  e n d ant s   we r e  th e  h ull  an d  ma c h i n e r y   i n su r e r s  of th e  v essel    DC Merwestone   u n de r a t i m e  po licy , issued  to th e   cl a i mant o w n e r s , for 12 month s  at 1 Apr il  2009. Th e  po licy   i n cluded  th e  In s t i t u t e  T i m e  C l a uses  – H ulls  1/10/83 (ITC) an d  th e  In s t i t u t e  A ddi t i ona l  P e r ils  C l a uses  (IAPC). C l a use  6.1 of th e  ITC prov ided  that :  “6.1 Th is   i n su ran ce   c ov e r s   l o ss  of or d amag e  to th e   sub  j ec t-matt e r i n su r ed   c a used   by:  6.1.1 p e r ils  of th e   se a s  . . .” C l a use  6.2 of th e  ITC (th e  In c hmar ee   cl a use ) prov ided  that :  “6.2 Th is   i n su ran ce   c ov e r s   l o ss  of or d amag e  to th e   sub  j ec t-matt e r i n su r ed   c a used   by:  . . . 6.2.3 n e g li g e n ce  of Ma s t e r s  Offi ce r s  Cr ew  or P il ot s . . . prov ided   suc h l o ss  or d amag e  ha s  not r esul t ed  from w ant of due   dili g e n ce   by  th e  A ssu r ed , O w n e r s  or Manag e r s .” Th e  IAPC prov ided  that :  “1. In c on side rat i on of an a ddi t i ona l  pr e m iu m th is   i n su ran ce   is   e xt e n ded  to c ov e r . . . 1.2 l o ss  or d amag e  to th e  V essel   c a used   by  an y  a ccide nt or by  n e g li g e n ce , i n c omp e t e n ce  or e rror of j ud gm e nt of an y  p e r s on w hat s o e v e r. 2 Th e   c ov e r prov ided   i n C l a use  1 is  . . . sub  j ec t to th e  prov is o that th e   l o ss  or d amag e  ha s  not r esul t ed  from w ant of due   dili g e n ce   by  th e  A ssu r ed , O w n e r s  or Manag e r s  . . .” Th e  v essel   w a s  a D u t c h-r e g is t e r ed  g e ar less   c argo v essel . In 2001 major r e novat i on w or k    w a s   c arr ied  o u t i n Roman i a an d  th e n i n th e  N e th e r l an ds . A n ew   b o w  an d  m ids h i p sec t i on we r e  atta c h ed  to th e  o ld  aft part of th e  v essel ; th e  on ly  or i g i na l   sec t i on w h ic h r e ma i n ed   w a s  aft of th e   e ng i n e  room bulk  h e a d . Th e r e   we r e  fiv e  port an d   s tar b oar d   d o uble - b ottom b a ll a s t tan ks , w h ic h we r e   di v ided   l ong i t udi na lly   by  a duc t keel  t u nn el   w h ic h w a s  62.48 m l ong, 1.8 m wide  an d  1.2 m h i gh. It ran mo s t of th e   le ngth of th e  v essel , from th e   b o w thr us t e r room i n th e  for es h i p to th e   e ng i n e  room at th e  aft of th e  v essel . It ha d   w at e rt i ght bulk  h e a d   se parat i on from th e   b o w thr us t e r room an d  from th e   e ng i n e  room. W i th i n th e   duc t keel   we r e  r e mot ely  op e rat ed   b a ll a s t va l v es , b a ll a s t p i p es  an d   elec tr ic a l   c a bles . On 21 Jan u ar y  2010 th e  v essel  arr i v ed  at K l a i p ed a, Li th u an i a, to disc harg e  a c argo of s o y a m e a l  an d  th e r e aft e r to l oa d  a c argo of sc rap s t eel . Th e  v essel   c omp le t ed   l oa di ng h e r c argo of sc rap s t eel  on 27 Jan u ar y  20.10 an d   le ft for B ilb ao at a b o u t 09.30 on th e  fo ll o wi ng d a y . At a b o u t 20.58 of 28 Jan u ar y  2010, th e  Eng i n ee r not iced   w at e r r isi ng be n e ath th e  floor p l at es   i n th e   e ng i n e  room. Th e  ma s t e r or de r ed  th e  Eng i n ee r to s tart p u mp i ng o u t th e   e ng i n e  room bil g es , bu t th e   w at e r le v el   c ont i n ued  to r ise . At a b o u t 10.00 on 29 Jan u ar y  2010 th e  v essel   w a s  to wed  to G dy n i a. Sh e   w a s  p u mp ed  o u t, an d   i n due   c o u r se   i t w a s   de t e rm i n ed  that th e r e   w a s  no le a k    i n w a y  of th e   e ng i n e  room. On 22 F eb r u ar y  2010 th e  v essel   w a s   d r y   d o cked   i n G dy n i a. T w o d a ys   l at e r th e  v essel   w a s  r e float ed , an d  on 26 F eb r u ar y  2010 s h e   w a s  to wed  to th e  Br ed o s h i p y ar d   i n Br e m e rhav e n for p e rman e nt r e pa i r s  to be   c arr ied  o u t. Th e  v essel’s  ma i n e ng i n e   w a s   d amag ed   bey on d  r e pa i r an d   w a s  r e p l a ced   by  a n ew   e ng i n e  an d  g e ar b ox. Th e  o w n e r s   cl a i m ed   u n de r th e  po licy . Th ei r c a se   w a s  that th e  prox i mat e   c a use  of th e   l o ss   w a s  th e  fort ui to us   i ngr ess  of se a w at e r i nto th e   b o w thr us t e r room, w h ic h w a s  a p e r il  of th e   se a s   c ov e r ed   u n de r ITC C l a use  6.1.1. In th e  a l t e rnat i v e , th e  O w n e r s   c ont e n ded  that th e r e   w a s   c ov e r u n de r ITC cl a use  6.2.3 an d  /or IAPC cl a use  1.2 bec a use:  (1) a prox i mat e   c a use  of th e   l o ss   w a s   c r ew  n e g li g e n ce   i n r el at i on to th e   e m e rg e n cy  fir e  p u mp sys t e m, w h ic h did  not r esul t from w ant of due   dili g e n ce   by  th e  o w n e r s  or manag e r s ; an d  /or (2) a prox i mat e   c a use  of th e   l o ss  (oth e r than that i n th e   b o w thr us t e r The “DC Merwestone” LL OYD ’ S L AW REPORTS 582[2013][QBD (Comm Ct)]P ART  9  room i t sel f) w a s  th e  n e g li g e n ce  of c ontra c tor s   i n fa ili ng to se a l  th e   c a ble   duc t at e a c h e n d  of th e   duc t keel  t u nn el , w h ic h did  not r esul t from w ant of due   dili g e n ce   by  th e  o w n e r s  or manag e r s . Th e   u n de r w r i t e r s’   c a se   w a s  that th e   l o ss   w a s  not prox i mat ely   c a used   by  a p e r il  of th e   se a bu t w a s  prox i mat ely   c a used   by   c r ew  n e g li g e n ce   i n r el at i on to th e   e m e rg e n cy  fir e  p u mp an d  th e r e   w a s  no c ov e r bec a use  th e   l o ss  r esul t ed  from w ant of due   dili g e n ce   by  th e  o w n e r s  or manag e r s   i n :  fa ili ng to prom ul gat e  appropr i at e   c o ld   we ath e r pro cedu r es ; fa ili ng to hav e  a prop e r an d   e ff  ec t i v e   sys t e m for th e  t es t i ng an d  ma i nt e nan ce  of th e   bil g e  a l arm s ; fa ili ng to i n s p ec t an d  ma i nta i n th e  for w ar d  an d  aft bulk  h e a ds   i n th e   duc t keel ; an d  fa ili ng to hav e  a prop e r an d   e ff  ec t i v e   sys t e m for th e  ma i nt e nan ce  of th e   bil g e  an d   b a ll a s t p u mp i ng sys t e m. In th e  a l t e rnat i v e  th e   u n de r w r i t e r s  a sse rt ed  that th ey  ha d  a de f  e n ce   u n de r sec t i on 39(5) of th e  Mar i n e  In su ran ce  A c t 1906 bec a use  th e   l o ss   w a s   c a used   by  th e   u n se a w orth i n ess  of th e  v essel  to w h ic h th e  o w n e r s   we r e  pr i v y , nam ely , th e   de fi cie nt c on di t i on of th e   e ng i n e  room p u mp i ng sys t e m. In th e  f  u rth e r a l t e rnat i v e , th e   u n de r w r i t e r s   c ont e n ded  that i f th e   cl a i m we r e  oth e r wise  va lid , th e   cl a i m w a s  forf  ei t bec a use  th e  o w n e r s   e mp l o yed  fra udule nt de v ices   i n su pport of th e   cl a i m w h e n pr ese nt i ng i t to u n de r w r i t e r s   i n 2010 an d  2011. It w a s  a lle g ed  that Mr Korn e t, for th e  manag e r s , delibe rat ely  or r ecklessly  gav e  a fa lse  narrat i v e  of th e   c a su a l t y   i n a le tt e r to th e   u n de r w r i t e r ’s   s o lici tor s , d at ed  21 Apr il  2010, i n a le tt e r to th e  fir s t de f  e n d ant a s   le a d   u n de r w r i t e r d at ed  27 J uly  2010, an d   i n a pr eli m i nar y  r e port d at ed  27 Jan u ar y  2011 se nt to th e   u n de r w r i t e r s . Th e  a lle gat i on w a s  that Mr Korn e t fa lsely   cl a i m ed  that th e   bil g e  a l arm ha d  gon e  off at a b o u t noon on 28 Jan u ar y  2010; that th e  a l arm ha d   bee n i gnor ed   bec a use   i t w a s  attr ibu t ed  to th e  ro lli ng of th e  v essel   i n h e av y   we ath e r; an d  that h e  ha d   bee n to ld   b oth th ese  th i ng s   by  th e  ma s t e r or c r ew . It w a s  a lle g ed  that h e   did  that bec a use  h e  ha d   bee n a d v ised  of th e   due   dili g e n ce  prov is o an d   u n de r s too d  a n eed  to dis tan ce  th e  o w n e r s  th e m sel v es  from an y  fa ul t i n r el at i on to th e   c a su a l t y , an d   w a s  th e r e for e   kee n to e xp l a i n th e  q u ant i t y  of w at e r r e a c h i ng th e   e ng i n e  room by  a narrat i v e   w h ic h i nvo l v ed  th e   bil g e  a l arm s   w or ki ng bu t bei ng i gnor ed   by  th e   c r ew . ———  Held   , by  QBD (Comm Ct) (P OPP L EWE LL  J) that th e   cl a i m w o uld   be   dis m issed . Th e  o w n e r s  ha d  a va lid   cl a i m u n de r th e  po licy   bu t i t ha d   bee n l o s t by  r e a s on of fra ud . (1) Th e   c a use  of i ngr ess  of w at e r i nto th e   e ng i n e  room du r i ng th e   c a su a l t y   w a s  not subs tant i a lly   i n dis p u t e . Wh e n th e   c r ew  fin is h ed   usi ng th e   e m e rg e n cy  fir e  ho se  pr i or to c argo op e rat i on s  at K l a i p ed a, se a w at e r r e ma i n ed   i n th e   e m e rg e n cy  fir e  p u mp an d   i n th e  fi l t e r l o c at ed  at th e   i n le t side  of th e  p u mp. Th e   w at e r froz e  an d   e xpan ded . Th e   e xpan si on c a used  a c ra ck    i n th e   c a si ng of th e   e m e rg e n cy  fir e  p u mp. It a ls o dis tort ed  th e   b ar r es tra i n i ng th e   lid  on th e  fi l t e r, s o that th e   lid  no l ong e r form ed  a se a l   wi th th e  fi l t e r i t sel f. Aft e r th e  v essel   s a iled  from K l a i p ed a on 28 Jan u ar y  2010, th e   ice   i n th e  p u mp an d  fi l t e r be gan to m el t. On ce  th e   ice  m el t ed , se a w at e r le a ked  an d   e nt e r ed  th e   b o w thr us t e r s pa ce  from th e  op e n se a i n le t va l v e  thro u gh th e   c ra ck    i n th e  fir e  p u mp c a si ng an d  th e   dis p l a ced  fi l t e r c ap. Th e   w at e r th e n e nt e r ed  th e   duc t keel  t u nn el  thro u gh an ap e rt u r e   w h e r e  th e   c a bles  ran thro u gh th e   bulk  h e a d  from th e   b o w thr us t e r room i nto th e  t u nn el . Wat e r w a s  fr ee  to fi ll  th e   duc t keel  t u nn el  on ce   i t ha d   e nt e r ed  th e   b o w thr us t e r room ( see  para 16). (2) Th e   c ha i n of c a us at i on of th e   l o ss   w a s  a s  fo ll o ws . (a) At th e   e n d  of th e  op e rat i on of usi ng th e   e m e rg e n cy  fir e  p u mp sys t e m to de - ice  th e  hat c h es  an d   deck  , th e   c r ew   did  not cl o se  th e   se a suc t i on an d   d ra i n th e  p u mp, w h ic h w a s   w hat a ll o wed  th e   w at e r to fr ee z e   i n th e   sys t e m an d  th e   sys t e m to r e ma i n op e n to th e   se a. Th e   c r ew   we r e  n e g li g e nt i n fa ili ng to d o s o ( see  para 21(1)). ( b ) Th e  v essel   l o s t h e r w at e rt i ght i nt e gr i t y   i n th e   b o w thr us t e r room bec a use  th e  fr ee z i ng of th e   w at e r i n th e   e m e rg e n cy  fir e  p u mp sys t e m c a used  th e  p u mp to c ra ck   an d  th e  fi l t e r lid  to be   dis p l a ced ; an d   bec a use   w at e r c o uld   e nt e r thro u gh b oth tho se  ph ysic a l   de f  ec t s  a s  a r esul t of th e  op e n suc t i on va l v e . That r e n de r ed  th e  v essel   u n se a w orth y . Th e   b o w thr us t e r room w a s  op e n to th e   se a, i n i t i a lly   sub  j ec t to a b arr ie r of ice   w h ic h w o uld   i n e v i ta bly  m el t i n th e   c o u r se  of th e   c ont e mp l at ed  vo y ag e . In si mp le  t e rm s  th e r e   we r e  t w o ho les   i n a part of th e  v essel’s  h ull  an d  ma c h i n e r y   w h ic h se parat ed  th e   b o w thr us t e r room from th e   se a ( see  para 21(2)). ( c ) Th e r e   w a s   i ngr ess  of se a w at e r i nto th e   b o w thr us t e r room, w h ic h o ccu rr ed  on ce  th e   ice   s tart ed  to m el t ( see  para 21(3)). ( d ) Th e r e   w a s   l a ck   of w at e rt i ght i nt e gr i t y  of th e   bulk  h e a ds . Th e   u npa cked   c a ble  g l an ds  at e a c h e n d  of th e   duc t keel  t u nn el , an d   c onfig u rat i on of th e  “p i p e ” at th e  aft e n d , led  to th e   i ngr ess  of w at e r i nto th e   e ng i n e  room thro u gh th e   duc t keel  ( see  para 21(4)). ( e ) Th e  v essel’s   e ng i n e  room p u mp i ng sys t e m w a s   de f  ec t i v e . Irr es p ec t i v e  of w h e th e r or not th e   e ng i n e  room bil g e  a l arm we nt off The “DC Merwestone” INSURANCE AND REINSURANCE [2013] 583QBD (Comm Ct)]]  w h e n i t o u ght to hav e   d on e , or at a ll , th e   c r ew   bec am e  a w ar e  of th e   i ngr ess   i n th e   e ng i n e  room at a su ffi cie nt ly   e ar ly   s tag e  for th e  p u mp i ng sys t e m to be   de p l o yed . Th e  p u mp i ng sys t e m s ho uld  hav e   bee n a ble  to c op e   wi th th e  rat e  of i ngr ess   w h ic h led  to th e   l o ss  an d   d amag e   i n th e   e ng i n e  room bu t i t fa iled  to d o s o ( see  para 21(5)). (3) Th e r e   w a s  a l o ss   by  p e r ils  of th e   se a s . (a) Th e  pr i n ci p les  app lic a ble  to p e r ils  of th e   se a s   we r e  a s  fo ll o ws . ( i ) A mar i n e   i n su r e r w a s   li a ble  for an y   l o ss  prox i mat ely   c a used   by  an i n su r ed  p e r il , e v e n tho u gh th e   l o ss   w o uld  not hav e  happ e n ed   bu t for th e  m isc on duc t or n e g li g e n ce  of th e  ma s t e r or c r ew  ( see  para 30); ——— Wayne Tank and Pump Co Ltd v  Employers Liability Assurance Corporation  Ltd   [1973] 2 Ll o yd’s  R e p 237; [1974] QB 57, The Miss Jay Jay  [1987] 1 Ll o yd’s  R e p 32, T M Noten BV v Harding  [1990] 2 Ll o yd’s  R e p 283, The Cendor MOPU   [2011] 1 Ll o yd’s  R e p 560; [2011] Ll o yd’s  R e p IR 302, r e f  e rr ed  to. ( ii ) Th e r e  ha d  to be  a “p e r il ” i n th e   se n se  of a fort ui t y  an d  not s om e th i ng w h ic h w a s   b o u n d  to happ e n or w h ic h w a s   i nt e nt i ona l  or i n e v i ta ble . Th e  pa ss ag e  of w at e r thro u gh a ho le   i n th e  v essel   w o uld   be  a p e r il  of th e   se a s   i f th e  o cc a si on for th e   w at e r to e nt e r th e  v essel   w a s  a fort ui to us   e xt e rna l  a ccide nt, not wi th s tan di ng that w at e r w o uld   e nt e r th e  v essel  thro u gh th e  ho le   i n an y   s tat e  of wi n d , se a or we ath e r. Th e  fort ui t y  m i ght lie   i n w hat c a used  th e  ho le , or w hat c a used  th e   se a w at e r to r e a c h or e nt e r th e  ho le , or a c om bi nat i on of b oth. If th e r e   w a s   suc h a fort ui t y , th e   e ntr y  of th e   se a w at e r w a s  not th e  or di nar y  a c t i on of th e   wi n d  an d   w av es   bec a use  th e   se a ha d  an e xtraor di nar y   e ff  ec t on th e  v essel  ( see  para s  31, 32 an d  33); ——— The Xantho  (1887) 12 App Ca s  503,  E D Sassoon & Co v Western Assurance Co  [1912] AC 561, P Samuel & Co Ltd v  Dumas  (1924) 18 Ll   L  R e p 211; [1924] AC 431, The La Pointe  [1991] 1 Ll o yd’s  R e p 89, The Vergina (No 2)  [2001] 2 Ll o yd’s  R e p 698; [2002] Ll o yd’s  R e p IR 51, r e f  e rr ed  to. ( iii ) Th e  p e r il  ha d  to be  “of th e   se a s ”. It w a s  not su ffi cie nt that th e  p e r il  happ e n ed  on b oar d  a v essel . If i t m i ght a s   well  hav e  happ e n ed  on th e   l an d  a s  on se a i t w o uld  not q u a li f  y  a s  a p e r il  of th e   se a s  ( see  para 34); ——— The Inchmaree  (1887) 12 App Ca s  484, Stott (Baltic) Steamers Ltd v Martin (The Ussa)  [1916] AC 304, r e f  e rr ed  to. ( i v) Th e  m e r e  fa c t of i ngr ess  of se a w at e r i nto a v essel   w a s  not i t sel f a p e r il  of th e   se a s  ( see  para 35); ——— P Samuel & Co Ltd v Dumas  (1924) 18 Ll   L  R e p 211; [1924] AC 431, Wadsworth Lighterage & Coaling Co Ltd v Sea Insurance Co Ltd   (1929) 34 Ll   L  R e p 285, r e f  e rr ed  to. (v) Prov ided  th e   i mm edi at e   c a use  of th e   i ngr ess   w a s  fort ui to us , th e n pr i ma fa cie  th e   l o ss   w o uld   be   by  p e r ils  of th e   se a, e v e n i f th e   c a use  of th e   i ngr ess   w a s   c r ew  n e g li g e n ce . An i ngr ess  of se a w at e r c a used   by   c r ew  n e g li g e n ce   w a s  a fort ui to us  a ccide nt w h ic h norma lly   c on s t i t u t ed  a p e r il  of th e   se a s  ( see  para 36); ———  Davidson v Burnand   (1868) L R 4 CP 117,  Hamilton, Fraser & Co v Pandorf & Co  (1887) 12 App Ca s  518, George Cohen, Sons & Co v National Benefit Assurance Co  Ltd   (1924) 18 Ll   L  R e p 199, The Stranna  (1938) 60 Ll   L  R e p 51; [1938] P 69, Canada  Rice Mills Ltd v Union Marine and General  Insurance Co Ltd   (1940) 67 Ll   L  R e p 549; [1941] AC 55, r e f  e rr ed  to. (v i ) Th e r e   w a s  a p e r il  of th e   se a s   i f th e  pr i or c a use  of i ngr ess  of se a w at e r w a s  th e   u n se a w orth i n ess  of th e  v essel , u n less  th e   u n se a w orth i n ess   w a s  a debili t y  of a ki n d   w h ic h pr e v e nt ed  th e   i ngr ess   bei ng fort ui to us   bec a use   i t w a s   i n e v i ta ble   i n an y   se a c on di t i on s . It w a s  th e r e for e  no b ar to th e  fort ui to us   i ngr ess   c on s t i t u t i ng a p e r il  of th e   se a s  that th e   c r ew  n e g li g e n ce   w h ic h ha d  g i v e n r ise  to i t r e n de r ed  th e  v essel   u n se a w orth y  ( see  para s  37, 38 an d  39); ———  Davidson v Burnand   (1868) L R 4 CP 117, Canada Rice Mills Ltd v Union Marine and General Insurance Co Ltd (1940) 67 Ll   L  R e p 549; [1941] AC 55, app lied ; The  Hellenic Dolphin  [1978] 2 Ll o yd’s  R e p 336, The Miss Jay Jay  [1987] 1 Ll o yd’s  R e p 32, The Cendor MOPU   [2011] 1 Ll o yd’s  R e p 560; [2011] Ll o yd’s  R e p IR 302, r e f  e rr ed  to. ( b ) In th e  pr ese nt c a se  th e   c a su a l t y   w a s  a l o ss  prox i mat ely   c a used   by  a p e r il  of th e   se a s , nam ely  th e  fort ui to us   e ntr y  of se a w at e r du r i ng th e  vo y ag e . A prox i mat e   c a use  of th e   l o ss  an d   d amag e   w a s  th e   i ngr ess  of se a w at e r, an d  th e   i ngr ess   w a s  fort ui to us , hav i ng bee n c a used   by   c r ew  n e g li g e n ce  at th e   l oa di ng port ( see  para 40). ( i ) Th e  prox i mat e   c a use   w a s  not th e  ant ecede nt n e g li g e n ce  of th e   c r ew   w h ic h r e n de r ed  th e  v essel   u n se a w orth y . Wh e r e  th e r e   w a s  a fort ui to us   i ngr ess  of se a w at e r, i t w a s  oft e n th e   i ngr ess   i t sel f, rath e r than The “DC Merwestone” LL OYD ’ S L AW REPORTS 584[2013][QBD (Comm Ct)]  that w h ic h r e n de r ed   i t fort ui to us , w h ic h w a s  to be  r e gar ded  a s  th e  prox i mat e   c a use  of th e   l o ss , or at le a s t a prox i mat e   c a use  of th e   l o ss . Th e r e   w a s  fort ui t y   i f th e   i ngr ess  of w at e r w a s  th e  r esul t of c r ew  n e g li g e n ce   w h ic h w a s  not i t sel f an i n su r ed  p e r il  ( see  para s  42 an d  43); ———  Davidson v Burnand   (1868) L R 4 CP 117,  Hamilton, Fraser & Co v Pandorf & Co  (1887) 12 App Ca s  518, Canada Rice Mills  Ltd v Union Marine and General Insurance Co Ltd   (1940) 67 Ll   L  R e p 549; [1941] AC 55, George Cohen, Sons & Co v National  Benefit Assurance Co Ltd   (1924) 18 Ll   L  R e p 199, The Vergina (No 2)  [2001] 2 Ll o yd’s  R e p 698; [2002] Ll o yd’s  R e p IR 51, app lied . ( ii ) It w a s   i rr ele vant that th e   c r ew  n e g li g e n ce   c o uld  a s   e a sily  happ e n ed  on l an d . It w a s  not n ecess ar y  to es ta blis h that th e  fort ui t y   w h ic h gav e  r ise  to th e   i ngr ess  of se a w at e r w a s   i t sel f “of th e   se a s ”, or i n deed  an i n su r ed  p e r il   i n i t sel f. Th e  p e r il   w a s  not th e  fort ui t y   w h ic h gav e  r ise  to th e   i ngr ess , i t w a s  th e  fort ui to us   i ngr ess   i t sel f. A cc or di ng ly  th e  fort ui t y   w h ic h gav e  r ise  to th e   i ngr ess  n eed  not i n de p e n de nt ly   be  “of th e   se a s ”. In th e  pr ese nt c a se  th e  fort ui to us   i ngr ess  of se a w at e r w a s  a r ele vant prox i mat e   c a use  of th e   l o ss  an d  th e r e   c o uld   be   li tt le   d o ub t that that w a s  an a ccide nt w h ic h w a s  p eculi ar to th e  mar i t i m e  nat u r e  of th e  a d v e nt u r e . Wh e th e r th e   c r ew  n e g li g e n ce   w h ic h s tart ed  th e   c ha i n of c a us at i on w a s  “of th e   se a s ” w a s  not a r ele vant i nq ui r y . If that w a s   w rong an d   i t w a s  n ecess ar y  to cl a ssi f  y  th e   c r ew  n e g li g e n ce  a s  “of th e   se a s ” th e n i t ha d  that c hara c t e r. Th e   c r ew   we r e   c arr yi ng o u t a p eculi ar ly  mar i t i m e  op e rat i on i n usi ng th e   e m e rg e n cy  fir e  ho se   sys t e m to de - ice  th e  hat c h es  an d   deck    i n pr e parat i on for c argo op e rat i on s  ( see  para s  45 an d  50); ———  Hamilton, Fraser & Co v Pandorf & Co  (1887) 12 App Ca s  518, The La Pointe  [1991] 1 Ll o yd’s  R e p 89, app lied ; The Inchmaree  (1887) 12 App Ca s  484, The Milasan [2000] 2 Ll o yd’s  R e p 458, dis t i ng uis h ed ;  Anderson v Morice  (1875) L R 10 CP 58, The Marel  [1994] 1 Ll o yd’s  R e p 624, r e f  e rr ed  to. ( iii ) Un se a w orth i n ess   w a s  not th e  prox i mat e   c a use  of th e   l o ss . Wh e r e  th e r e   w a s   i n i t i a l   u n se a w orth i n ess , a d v e r se   we ath e r, l o ss  of w at e rt i ght i nt e gr i t y  an d   d amag e , th e   l o ss   w a s  tr e at ed  a s  on e   by  p e r ils  of th e   se a s  on ly . It ha d   l ong bee n es ta blis h ed  that a v essel’s   u nfitn ess  to e n c o u nt e r for esee a ble   we ath e r c on di t i on s   did  not pr e v e nt th e   l o ss   bei ng r e gar ded  a s  on e   by  p e r ils  of th e   se a s  an d   w o uld  not norma lly   d o s o. Un de r a t i m e  po licy , s om e , bu t not a ll , ki n ds  of u n se a w orth i n ess   we r e   c apa ble  of de f  e at i ng a t i m e  po licy . Tho se   we r e   w h e r e  th e r e   w a s  a debili t y  or i nh e r e nt we a k  n ess   i n th e  v essel   w h ic h ha d   c om e  a b o u t wi tho u t an y   e xt e rna l  fort ui t y . In tho se   c a ses , th e r e   w a s  no p e r il  of th e   se a s   bec a use  th e   l o ss   w a s   diss o ci at ed  from th e  a c t i on of th e   wi n d  an d  th e   w av es  an d  th e   c a su a l t y   w a s   si mp ly  th e  r esul t of we ar an d  t e ar. A debili t y   w o uld   de f  e at a cl a i m u n de r a t i m e  po licy   i f th e   debili t y   w a s  to be  a ss o ci at ed   wi th norma l   we ar an d  t e ar, w h e th e r c a used   by  th e   se a or oth e r wise , or i f th e r e  ha d   bee n no mor e  than th e  or di nar y  a c t i on of wi n d  an d   w av es  a s   c ontra s t ed   wi th s om e   e xt e rna l  fort ui to us   e v e nt w h ic h ha d  a ll o wed   e ntr y  of se a w at e r. Th us   debili t y   w a s   s om e t i m es  paraphra sed  a s   i nh e r e nt we a k  n ess , Th e   dis t i n c t i on w a s   be t wee n a de fi cie n cy   w h ic h w a s   inherent   an d  that w h ic h aro se  from s om e   external   e v e nt ( see  para s  54 an d  57); ——— The Golden Fleece  (1870) 2 A s p M L C 431,  Dudgeon v Pembroke  (1877) 2 App Ca s  284, Sassoon v Western Assurance Co  [1912] AC 561, Grant, Smith & Co v Seattle Construction and Dry Dock Co  [1920] AC 162,  Mountain v Whittle  (1921) 6 Ll   L  R e p 378; [1921] AC 615, The Miss Jay  Jay  [1987] 1 Ll o yd’s  R e p 32, The Cendor  MOPU   [2011] 1 Ll o yd’s  R e p 560; [2011] Ll o yd’s  R e p IR 302, app lied . ( i v) Th e  arg u m e nt that th e   i ngr ess   w a s  not a fort ui t y   bec a use  th e   d amag e  to th e  fir e  p u mp ho usi ng an d  fi l t e r lid  ha d  a l r e a dy  o ccu rr ed   be for e  th e  v essel   le ft K l a i p ed a, s o that th e   i ngr ess   w a s   b o u n d  to o ccu r, w o uld   be  r e  j ec t ed . Th e   debili t y   c a ses   we r e   c a ses   w h e r e  th e   l o ss  aro se  from th e   i nh e r e nt we a k  n ess  of th e  v essel   due  to we ar an d  t e ar an d  not from s om e   e xt e rna l  fort ui to us   e v e nt. B y   c ontra s t, th e   i ngr ess  to th e  v essel’s   b o w thr us t e r room did  not ar ise  from we ar an d  t e ar, or an y   we a k  n ess   w h ic h w a s   i nh e r e nt, bu t from an e xt e rna l  fort ui to us  a ccide nt, nam ely  th e   c r ew’s  n e g li g e n ce   i n r el at i on to th e   e m e rg e n cy  fir e  p u mp i ng sys t e m. Th e   c a su a l t y   w a s  prox i mat ely   c a used   by  a fort ui t y  ( see  para s  60, 61 an d  62); ———  Ballantyne v Mackinnon  [1896] 2 QB 455, dis t i ng uis h ed ;  Anderson v Morice  (1875) L R 10 CP 58, The Marel  [1994] 1 Ll o yd’s  R e p 624, r e f  e rr ed  to. (4) Th e r e   w a s  a l o ss   by   c r ew  n e g li g e n ce  an d  th e r e   w a s  no w ant of due   dili g e n ce   by  th e  o w n e r s  or manag e r s . The “DC Merwestone” INSURANCE AND REINSURANCE [2013] 585QBD (Comm Ct)]]
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