Type

Working Paper

Authors

Peter Solar
Cormac Ó Gráda
Morgan Kelly

Subjects

Law

Topics
insurance industrial revolution g22 united states industrial safety n73 shipping

Safety at Sea during the Industrial Revolution (2019)

Abstract Shipping was central to the rise of the Atlantic economies, but an extremely hazardous activity: in the 1780s, roughly five per cent of British ships sailing in summer for the United States never returned. Against the widespread belief that shipping technology was stagnant before iron steamships, in this paper we demonstrate that between the 1780s and 1820s, a safety revolution occurred that saw shipping losses and insurance rates on oceanic routes almost halved thanks to steady improvements in shipbuilding and navigation. Iron reinforcing led to stronger vessels while navigation improved, not through chronometers which remained too expensive and unreliable for general use, but through radically improved charts, accessible manuals of basic navigational techniques, and improved shore-based navigational aids.
Collections Ireland -> University College Dublin -> College of Social Sciences and Law
Ireland -> University College Dublin -> School of Economics
Ireland -> University College Dublin -> Economics Working Papers & Policy Papers

Full list of authors on original publication

Peter Solar, Cormac Ó Gráda, Morgan Kelly

Experts in our system

1
Cormac Ó Gráda
University College Dublin
Total Publications: 193
 
2
Morgan Kelly
University College Dublin
Total Publications: 37