A-7683, JULY 7, 1925, 5 COMP. GEN. 7

A-7683: Jul 7, 1925

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COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY - WAGES OF CREW OF VESSELS WHILE SICK IN HOSPITAL A MEMBER OF THE CREW OF A COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY VESSEL WHO WAS INJURED BY AN AUTOMOBILE WHILE ON AN AUTHORIZED SHORE LIBERTY AND TRANSFERRED TO A PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE HOSPITAL FOR TREATMENT. WAS "IN THE SERVICE OF THE SHIP" WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE REGULATIONS OF THE COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY. IS ENTITLED TO HIS WAGES WHILE IN THE HOSPITAL SUBJECT TO THE LIMITATIONS OF SAID REGULATIONS. 1925: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 26. REQUESTING DECISION WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED OF WAGES TO MEMBERS OF THE CREWS OF COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY VESSELS WHILE ABSENT THEREFROM UNDER TREATMENT IN A HOSPITAL MAINTAINED BY THE UNITED STATES PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE ON ACCOUNT OF SICKNESS OR INJURIES NOT RESULTING FROM THEIR OWN MISCONDUCT.

A-7683, JULY 7, 1925, 5 COMP. GEN. 7

COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY - WAGES OF CREW OF VESSELS WHILE SICK IN HOSPITAL A MEMBER OF THE CREW OF A COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY VESSEL WHO WAS INJURED BY AN AUTOMOBILE WHILE ON AN AUTHORIZED SHORE LIBERTY AND TRANSFERRED TO A PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE HOSPITAL FOR TREATMENT, WAS "IN THE SERVICE OF THE SHIP" WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE REGULATIONS OF THE COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY, AND IS ENTITLED TO HIS WAGES WHILE IN THE HOSPITAL SUBJECT TO THE LIMITATIONS OF SAID REGULATIONS.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF COMMERCE, JULY 7, 1925:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 26, 1925, REQUESTING DECISION WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED OF WAGES TO MEMBERS OF THE CREWS OF COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY VESSELS WHILE ABSENT THEREFROM UNDER TREATMENT IN A HOSPITAL MAINTAINED BY THE UNITED STATES PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE ON ACCOUNT OF SICKNESS OR INJURIES NOT RESULTING FROM THEIR OWN MISCONDUCT.

THE QUESTION ARISES IN CONNECTION WITH THE INJURY OF HARRY WILLIAMS, OFFICERS' STEWARD, ON THE UNITED STATES COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY STEAMER SURVEYOR, WHO WAS STRUCK BY AN AUTOMOBILE ON THE EVENING OF NOVEMBER 20, 1924, IN SEATTLE, WASH., WHILE HE WAS RETURNING TO THE SHIP FROM AUTHORIZED SHORE LIBERTY. HE WAS TAKEN TO THE UNITED STATES PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE HOSPITAL WHERE, IT IS STATED, HE WOULD PROBABLY REMAIN FOR SEVERAL MONTHS DUE TO THE INJURIES RECEIVED IN THE ACCIDENT.

THE CLAIMANT WAS EMPLOYED UNDER SHIPPING ARTICLES ADAPTED TO THE UNITED STATES COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY SERVICE IN FORM SIMILAR TO THAT PRESCRIBED FOR MERCHANT SEAMEN BY SECTION 4612, REVISED STATUTES. HIS TERM OF EMPLOYMENT EXPIRED ON JANUARY 4, 1925.

REGULATIONS FOR THE COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY, MADE A PART OF THE SHIPPING ARTICLES, PROVIDE:

PARAGRAPH 97. STATUS OF MEN IN HOSPITAL.--- WHEN A MAN IS TRANSFERRED TO A HOSPITAL, HIS ACCOUNTS UNLESS OTHERWISE ORDERED, SHALL BE RETAINED ON BOARD THE VESSEL TO WHICH HE IS ATTACHED, AND HE SHALL CONTINUE TO HOLD THE RATING IN WHICH HE WAS SERVING UNTIL HIS DISCHARGE FROM THE HOSPITAL TO DUTY, OR UNTIL HIS DISCHARGE FROM THE SERVICE ON THE EXPIRATION OF HIS TERM.

PARAGRAPH 98. PAY AND RATIONS IN HOSPITAL.--- THE RATION OF A MEMBER OF A CREW SHALL CEASE WHEN HE ENTERS A HOSPITAL, AND HIS PAY SHALL BE STOPPED AT THE EXPIRATION OF 60 CALENDAR DAYS, OR UPON HIS DISCHARGE FROM THE HOSPITAL, NOT TO DUTY, OR AT THE EXPIRATION OF THE TERM FOR WHICH HE SHIPPED, IF EITHER OF THE LATTER OCCURS BEFORE THE EXPIRATION OF 60 CALENDAR DAYS.

PARAGRAPH 103. SHORE LIBERTY.--- WHEN THE VESSEL IS IN PORT LIBERTY ON SHORE SHALL BE GRANTED TO THE CREW AT SUCH TIMES AND UNDER SUCH CONDITIONS AS THE COMMANDING OFFICER MAY DIRECT, BUT NOT MORE THAN ONE-HALF OF THE CREW SHALL BE GRANTED LIBERTY AT ONE TIME.

FOR THE PURPOSE OF RECEIVING MEDICAL AND HOSPITAL SERVICE IN THE HOSPITAL MAINTAINED BY THE PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE, CLAIMANT UNDER THE TERMS OF HIS EMPLOYMENT WAS A "SEAMAN" WITHIN THE MEANING OF SECTION 3 OF THE ACT OF MARCH 3, 1875, 18 STAT. 485, WHICH PROVIDES:

THAT TERM "SEAMAN," WHEREVER EMPLOYED IN LEGISLATION RELATING TO THE MARINE-HOSPITAL SERVICE, SHALL BE HELD TO INCLUDE ANY PERSON EMPLOYED ON BOARD IN THE CARE, PRESERVATION, OR NAVIGATION OF ANY VESSEL, OR IN THE SERVICE, ON BOARD, OF THOSE ENGAGED IN SUCH CARE, PRESERVATION, OR NAVIGATION.

THE REGULATIONS OF THE PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE, 1913, PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO THE ABOVE ACT, PROVIDE, PARAGRAPH 460:

OFFICERS AND SEAMEN ON VESSELS OF THE COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY SHALL BE ENTITLED TO RELIEF UNDER THE SAME REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE TREATMENT OF SEAMEN ON DOCUMENTED VESSELS * * *.

THE RIGHT TO SUCH HOSPITALIZATION EXISTS AS A SPECIAL PRIVILEGE BY VIRTUE OF THE PROVISIONS OF LAWS AND REGULATIONS APPLICABLE TO THE PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE AND IS SEPARATE AND DISTINCT AND NOT DEPENDENT UPON THE TERMS OF THE EMPLOYMENT. 22 COMP. DEC. 2.

THE PROVISIONS HEREINBEFORE QUOTED FROM THE REGULATIONS APPLICABLE TO THE CREWS OF THE COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY VESSELS APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN MADE WITH A VIEW TO EQUALIZING THE CONDITIONS OF SUCH SERVICE WITH THAT OF MERCHANT SEAMEN AND IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE LAWS AND USAGES OF THE SEA SERVICE AND ARE NOT UNREASONABLE NOR IN CONFLICT WITH LAW AND THE PAYMENT OF WAGES TO THE MEMBERS OF SUCH CREWS WHILE IN HOSPITALS BY REASON OF SICKNESS OR INJURY, AS PRESCRIBED BY SECTION 98 OF THESE REGULATIONS, WOULD APPEAR TO BE AUTHORIZED.

THE CLAIMANT, AT THE TIME OF HIS INJURY, WAS ON SHORE LIBERTY AUTHORIZED BY HIS COMMANDING OFFICER IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE REGULATIONS PRESCRIBED FOR THE SERVICE AND WAS "IN THE SERVICE OF THE SHIP" WHEN TRANSFERRED TO THE PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE HOSPITAL AND IS ENTITLED TO THE PAYMENT OF HIS WAGES FROM NOVEMBER 20, 1924, THE DATE OF HIS INJURY, TO JANUARY 4, 1925, THE DATE OF THE TERMINATION OF HIS TERM OF EMPLOYMENT, SUCH PERIOD BEING LESS THAN 60 CALENDAR DAYS, AS PRESCRIBED BY SECTION 98 OF THE REGULATIONS, CITED.