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MANILA STEAMSHIP CO., INC. VS.

INSA ABDULHAMAN right to limit his liability by abandonment of the vessel, as


AND LIM HONG TO conferred by Art. 587 of the Code of Commerce

Facts: Issue:
Suit was filed by Insa Abdulhaman against Manila WON Lim Hong To should be exempted from liability in view of
Steamship, owner of M/S Bowline Knot and Lim Hong the total loss of his own vessel (NO)
To, owner of M/L Consuelo V, to recover damage for the
death of his 5 children and loss of personal properties on Ratio:
board M/L Consuelo V as a result of a Maritime collision By operating without license, Lim deliberately increased the
between the said vessels risk to which the passengers and shippers of cargo aboard
As cause of the collision, CA affirmed the findings of the the vessel would be subjected
Board of Marine Inquiry, that the commanding officer if the His liability can not be identical to that of a shipowner who
colliding vessels had both been negligent in operating their bears in mind the safety of the passenger and cargo by
respective vessels employing duly licensed officers
Court held both owners solidarily liable to Abdulhaman To hold as the CA held is to erase all difference between
under Art. 827 of the Code of Commerce, but exempted Lim compliance with law and the deliberate disregard thereof
Hong To from liability by reason of the sinking and total The international rule is to the effect that the right of
loss of his vessel M/L Consuelo V abandonment of vessels, as a legal limitation of a
It is to be noted that both the master and the engineer of the shipowners liability, does not apply to cases where the
motor launch Consuelo V were not duly licensed as such injury or the average is due to the shipowners own fault.
(reason for such given by Lim is that the income derived
from the vessel is insufficient to pay licensed officers who
demand high salaries)
In a letter, Exhibit 2, it is expressly declared that in case of
any accident, damage, or loss, I shall assume full risk and
responsibility for all the consequence thereof.
Exhibit 3, his permit to operate stipulated that in case of
any accident, damage or loss, the registered owner thereof
shall assume full risk and responsibility for all the
consequences thereof, and that said vessel shall be held
answerable for any negligence, disregard or violation of any
of the conditions herein imposed and for any consequence
arising from such negligence, disregard or violation
CA held that neither the letter nor the permit contained any
waiver of the right of Lim to limit his liability to the value
of his motor launch and that he did not lose the statutory