The Bruiser (s s), belonging to the General Steam Navigation Company, was in collision yesterday morning off Aldoborough (Suffolk) with the Haswell (s collier), from London for Sunderland, and foundered in nine minutes afterwards, with a loss, it is said, of more than 14 lives. The Bruiser left Hull on Saturday night for London, in charge of Captain Charles Hartley, with about 90 passengers; the crew mustering 27 hands (including the stewardess), All went on well till about half-past 2 o'clock on Sunday morning. It was a fine moonlight morning, with a smooth sea, and the weather remarkably clear. Captain Hartley was in his berth. On approaching Sizewell Bank, a vessel was seen, with a masthead light exhibited, with her head down, which was suspected to be riding at anchor. The Bruiser, which had all her lights burning brightly, continued her course, and, as she neared, the other vessel, starboarded her helm, and was continuing her course when suddenly a fearful collision took place, the stranger's bows, which proved to be the Haswell steamer, striking the Bruiser on the starboard side, abreast the engine-room, and cutting her down to the water's edge. The steamer held together about four or five minutes, when they cleared, and the Bruiser immediately filled and went down. The scene during this time was most terrible. There was a rush among the passengers for the Haswell, both crews rendering all the help in their power to rescue them. About 75 were saved, and up to the time of this being written, 14 were known to be lost; 11 passengers, five males, three females, and two children, and three of the crew. The report of the Haswell steamer in reference to this accident, states that the master, Captain Chase, and his chief mate were below at the time. The second mate had charge. He says he saw the Bruiser steamer coming up, a little on the port bow, and as the two approached each other, he ported his helm, expecting the Bruiser would follow; but, instead of which, he starboarded, and the collision immediately ensued. Seeing that the Bruiser was sinking, and was likely to endanger the safety of the Haswell and the people she had saved, Captain Chase ordered the engines to be reversed, and directly afterwards the Bruiser went down stern first. The Haswell put out her boats and remained about the spot for three hours, when she put back to London, and arrived off Victoria Docks last evening.
Transcribed by Lars Bruzelius
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Copyright © 1997 Lars Bruzelius.