19 OCTOBER 1850, Page 10


_London, 12th October 1850.

Sin—The ignorance or heedlessness of some of the constructers of engines and boilers is well shown by the bursting of the mudhole-door of the Erin's Queen boiler at London Bridge. The mode in which it was secured is known by all competent engineers to be very precarious ; and the danger is clearly pointed out and the practice reprobated in the following extract from Bourne 's Treatise on the Steam-Engine, published by Longman three years ago. /t is much the safest way to put on both rnudhole and manhole doors from the inside, with cross bars on the outside to keep them closed. The plan sometimes followed, of putting. on mudhole-doors from the outside, and securing them by one or two bolts, is a practice we have already reprehended as full of danger • as, if the thread strips or the bolt breaks, the door will fly off, and the o mg water rush out, scalding every one in the vicinity. Mudhole-doors of this kind, even if they leak, cannot be screwed up to tighten them; as there is a perpetual risk, in tightening the doors, of strip- ping the thread or breaking the bolt."

Now that the danger has been so sadly illustrated by the recent accident, it is to be hoped that Mr. Bourne's judicious remarks will inset with more attention than before from engineers and steam-ship proprietors. C. E.