CourtUnited States District Courts. 9th Circuit. United States District Court (Southern District of California)
Writing for the CourtCURTIS
Citation265 F. Supp. 595
PartiesPetition of WATERMAN STEAMSHIP CORPORATION, a corporation, owner of the vessel S.S. CHICKASAW, for exoneration from and limitation of liability.
Docket NumberNo. 62-1024.,62-1024.
Decision Date04 August 1966

265 F. Supp. 595

Petition of WATERMAN STEAMSHIP CORPORATION, a corporation, owner of the vessel S.S. CHICKASAW, for exoneration from and limitation of liability.

No. 62-1024.

United States District Court S. D. California, C. D.

August 4, 1966.

265 F. Supp. 596

Graham, James & Rolph, by Leo J. Vander Lans and Don A. Proudfoot, Long Beach, Cal., for Waterman Steamship Corp.

McCutchen, Black, Verleger & Shea, by Philip K. Verleger, Los Angeles, Cal., by Manuel Real, Eugene Kramer, Los Angeles, Cal., John F. Meadows and Henry Haugen, Admiralty & Shipping Section, U. S. Department of Justice, San Francisco, Cal., Fletcher & Rauch, by Robert A. Fletcher, Los Angeles, Cal., Bigham, Englar, Jones & Houston, by John W. R. Zisgen, New York City, for claimants.


CURTIS, District Judge.

On February 7, 1962, the steamship CHICKASAW, owned by the petitioner, Waterman Steamship Corporation, ran hard aground on Santa Rosa Island. She was returning from Japan, bound for Los Angeles, and was attempting a landfall on the south light of the island. It was a dark and rainy night with visibility about one mile, and the captain had been without benefit of a celestial observation for two days because of overcast. There was a substantial loss of her two million dollar cargo, although we are not now concerned with the actual amount thereof. Nevertheless, a number of admiralty actions have been filed, all of which are concerned with the grounding, but in which further proceedings have been stayed pending disposition of the present matter.

Now before the court is a petition for exoneration from liability under § 1304 of the The Carriage of Goods by Sea Act (46 U.S.C.A. § 1300 et seq.) or, in the alternative, a limitation of liability under 46 U.S.C.A. § 183.

In seeking exoneration from liability the petitioner contends that the grounding was the sole result of the negligence of its own crew in the neglect and man-agreement of the ship, entitling petitioner to exoneration under COGSA. That the ship's crew was negligent is apparent from the evidence, so apparent in fact that the cargo claimants do not strenuously contend to the contrary. No effort was made to check or repair the fathometer, notwithstanding the fact that it had been reported out of order. The deep sea sounder, whether operative or not, had been chiseled from the deck of the vessel and sold for junk, while in the Orient. No deviation card had been prepared for the radio direction finder in recent years, and there is no indication in the evidence that any deviation at any quadrant was known or calculated in determining radio fixes. The radio fixes obtained shortly before the...

To continue reading

Request your trial
2 cases
  • Waterman Steamship Corporation v. Gay Cottons, 21767.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • August 5, 1969
    ...of fact and conclusions of law denying both exoneration and limitation. The court also filed a memorandum opinion which is reported at 265 F.Supp. 595, 1966 A.M.C. 2219. Waterman has appealed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1292(a) (3). See Republic of France v. United States, 5 Cir., 1961, 290 F.2......
  • Cockerham v. Howell, Civ. A. No. 3279.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of Louisiana)
    • March 29, 1967
    ...could this meager hospital record, standing alone, support the allegation that permanent injury resulted from this accident, nor 265 F. Supp. 595 could it support a judgment for anything close to the sum of The Court is duty bound to inquire into the question of its jurisdiction over cases ......

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT