PQs Feb 28 – March 3

Safety Belts: Children
Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what information his Department holds on the level of seat belt usage among children travelling in (a) the front and (b) the rear of cars in (i) 1990, (ii) 1997, (iii) 2005 and (iv) the latest period for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement. [R] [43880]
Mike Penning: The percentage of child (aged 0-13) car occupants wearing a seatbelt or using another type of restraint is shown in the table. These figures are based on observational surveys of wearing rates in England which were last carried out in November 2009.
Percentage
Front seatRear seat
October 19909667
October 19979479
October 20059794
November 20099496
Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of seat belt and child restraint use in reducing the severity of injury to children involved in car accidents; and if he will make a statement. [43881]
Mike Penning: The Department for Transport has made no recent assessment of the effectiveness of seat belts and child restraints at protecting children in cars. However, a study undertaken in the USA in 2002 concluded that a properly used child restraint reduced the risk of fatal injury by 71% for infants less than one-year-old and by 54% for toddlers one to four-years-old.
The Government are committed to ensuring the safety of all road users, including children. Regulations in Great Britain require children up to 135 cm in height or 12 years of age, whichever is reached first, to use an appropriate child restraint system for their weight while travelling in most cars.
The number of killed or seriously injured children travelling in cars has reduced by 45% during the period 2003 to 2009.
PACTS Comments: A 45% reduction in the number of children killed or seriously injured while travelling in cars is an admirable achievement and it is hoped this trend continues. It is important to note that seat belts and other types of restraint are only effective if they are used and adjusted correctly. 
It is also important to note that while there is a downward trend for the number of children killed or seriously injured while travelling in cars, the UK has a higher accident rate for child pedestrians than the European average. A report by MVA for DfT (2005) found that this was partly due to different road environments, with British children spending more time near busy roads. 
Aviation
Stephen Lloyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what meetings Ministers in his Department have had with representatives of (a) airlines and (b) pilots since May 2010. [39784]
Mrs Villiers: Ministers in the Department frequently meet with representatives of airlines and pilots. Details of all ministerial meetings with external organisations between May and September 2010 have been published on the Department’s website:
http://www.dft.gov.uk/press/ministers/transparency/
Information for October 2010 to 31 December 2010 is being collated and will be released as soon as it is practical to do so.
Recent meetings with representatives of airlines and pilots include:
A meeting chaired by the Secretary of State for Transport involving airlines and freight cargo companies on 4 November following an air cargo security incident.
The Minister of State for Transport chaired a National Aviation Security Committee on 29 November. This included representatives from the British Airline Pilots Association.
The Minister of State for Transport also chairs regular meetings of the South East Airports Taskforce, which includes representations of BA, Virgin, easyJet and Ryanair. The most recent was held on 17 January.
Aviation: Pilots
Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what his policy is on the maximum amount of time airline pilots should be expected to fly in one day. [38873]
Mrs Villiers: The Civil Aviation Authority’s policy is set out in its publication CAP 371: The Avoidance of Fatigue In Aircrews-Guide to Requirements. Airlines are required to have flight and duty time schemes which ensure that crew members are adequately rested at the beginning of each flying duty period so that they can perform at a satisfactory level of efficiency and safety in all normal and abnormal circumstances arising during flying.
Aviation: Safety
Henry Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent assessment he has made of the potential effects of pilot fatigue on flight safety. [39680]
Mrs Villiers: We recognise that pilot fatigue can impact on aviation safety. UK airlines are therefore required to have robust flight time limitation schemes to prevent the onset of fatigue. These have to be approved by the Civil Aviation Authority.
In addition, the CAA reviews all available information, including newly available research, on the effects of fatigue in aviation and maintains an advisory group with its stakeholders to discuss the effect of crew fatigue on aviation safety.
Henry Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what his Department’s policy is on flight time limitations for pilots; and if he will make a statement. [39682]
Stephen Lloyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what his policy is on the maximum amount of time airline pilots should be expected to fly in one day. [39755]
Mrs Villiers: The Civil Aviation Authority’s policy is set out in its publication CAP 371: The Avoidance of Fatigue in Aircrews-Guide to Requirements. Airlines are required to have flight and duty time schemes which ensure that crew members are adequately rested at the beginning of each flying duty period so that they can perform at a satisfactory level of efficiency and safety in all normal and abnormal circumstances arising during flying.
Henry Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent discussions he has had with the European Aviation Safety Agency on the Notice of Proposed Amendment to flight time limitations. [39683]
Mrs Villiers: None. The European Aviation Safety Agency published the Notice of Proposed Amendment on 20 December 2010. The consultation closes on 20 March. The Civil Aviation Authority is currently reviewing the proposals.
Our aim is to ensure that the final requirements maintain a high level of safety for UK airlines. If the CAA review identifies any areas of significant concern we will discuss these with EASA at the earliest opportunity.
Stephen Lloyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what implications the implementation of the provisions of the European Union Bill will have for the transfer of authority over flight time limitations from the Civil Aviation Authority to the European Aviation Safety Agency. [39754]
Mrs Villiers: None. The EU already has competence in this area.
Stephen Lloyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) whether he intends to respond to the European Aviation Safety Agency’s Notice of Proposed Amendment for flight time limitations; (2) what assessment he has made of the effects on safety of the European Aviation Safety Agency’s Notice of Proposed Amendment for flight time limitations. [39757]
Mrs Villiers: The Civil Aviation Authority is currently reviewing the proposals contained in the Notice of Proposed Amendment. We will respond to the European Aviation Safety Agency once the CAA has completed that review. Our aim is to ensure that the final requirements maintain a high level of safety for UK airlines.
Stephen Lloyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions he has had at the Council of Ministers level on (a) the European Aviation Safety Agency and (b) flight time limitations. [39783]
Mrs Villiers: None. The European Aviation Safety Agency published draft legislation for consultation on 20 December 2010. The consultation closes on 20 March. The Civil Aviation Authority is currently reviewing the proposals.
Our aim is to ensure that the final requirements maintain a high level of safety for UK airlines. If necessary we will discuss the legislation with our European counterparts at an appropriate stage in the legislative process.
Aviation: Working Hours
David T. C. Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent assessment he has made of the effects of pilot fatigue on flight safety. [39851]
Mrs Villiers: We recognise that pilot fatigue can impact on aviation safety. UK airlines are therefore required to have robust flight time limitation schemes to prevent the onset of fatigue. These have to be approved by the Civil Aviation Authority.
In addition, the CAA reviews all available information, including newly available research, on the effects of fatigue in aviation and maintains an advisory group with its stakeholders to discuss the effect of crew fatigue on aviation safety.
David T. C. Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what his policy is on flight time limitations for pilots. [39852]
Naomi Long: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what his policy is on flight time limitations for pilots; and if he will make a statement. [40306]
Mrs Villiers: The Civil Aviation Authority’s policy is set out in its publication CAP 371: The Avoidance of Fatigue In Aircrews-Guide to requirements. Airlines are required to have flight and duty time schemes which ensure that crew members are adequately rested at the beginning of each flying duty period so that they can perform at a satisfactory level of efficiency and safety in all normal and abnormal circumstances arising during flying.
Naomi Long: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the likely effect on safety of replacing the Civil Aviation Authority’s CAP371 Flight Time Limitations with the European Aviation Safety Agency’s proposal. [40304]
Mrs Villiers: The European Aviation Safety Agency published draft legislation for consultation on 20 December 2010. The consultation closes on 20 March. The Civil Aviation Authority is currently reviewing the proposals. It will respond to the consultation once it has completed its review. Our aim is to ensure that the final requirements maintain a high level of safety for UK airlines.
Naomi Long: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions Ministers in his Department have had with the European Aviation Safety Agency on the Notice of Proposed Amendment to Flight Time Limitations in the last 12 months. [40305]
Mrs Villiers: None. The European Aviation Safety Agency published the Notice of Proposed Amendment on 20 December 2010. The consultation closes on 20 March. The Civil Aviation Authority is currently reviewing the proposals.
Our aim is to ensure that the final requirements maintain a high level of safety for UK airlines. If the CAA review identifies any areas of significant concern we will discuss these with EASA at the earliest opportunity.
Naomi Long: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research his Department has (a) undertaken and(b) commissioned on pilot fatigue in the last 10 years. [40307]
Mrs Villiers: In the last 10 years the Civil Aviation Authority has commissioned:
a study to investigate the fatigue implications of 12-hour shift patterns operated by police helicopter crews; a study into in-flight napping strategies; and continuing studies into sleep patterns which have lead to revisions of CAP 371, “The Avoidance of Fatigue in Aircrews” and the development of the System for Aircrew Fatigue Evaluation (SAFE) computer model. SAFE is used by the CAA to evaluate Flight Time Limitation scheme submissions by operators.
Driving Offences: Insurance
Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps he is taking to reduce the number of people who drive without insurance. [41745]
Mike Penning: On 4 February 2011 a new offence in Great Britain of keeping a vehicle with no insurance was introduced. Enforcement of the offence is planned to commence in the spring.
The scheme for continuous insurance enforcement (CIE) will identify uninsured vehicles by regularly comparing the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency’s (DVLA) vehicles database with the motor insurance database managed by the Motor Insurers’ Bureau.
Unless a vehicle is declared off road, those who remain uninsured, in spite of warning, will receive a fixed penalty notice and fine of £100, their vehicles may be clamped and impounded and they may face prosecution by the courts.
This builds upon improvements in police enforcement, such as the use of ANPR cameras which have significantly reduced the level of uninsured driving.
Lorries: Sleep Apnoea
Meg Munn: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what guidance the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency provides to GPs on the identification of obstructive sleep apnoea for drivers of large commercial vehicles; and on which dates the guidance has been updated in the last 10 years. [41871]
Mike Penning: The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency provides guidance to GPs in its twice yearly published ‘At a Glance Guide to the current Medical Standards of Fitness to Drive’. Since 2008, this publication has advised GPs to refer to the ‘Tiredness can Kill’ leaflet for more information on obstructive sleep apnoea. This leaflet was introduced in May 2004 and was updated May 2006, November 2008, September 2009 and June 2010.
Since March 2003, guidance on obstructive sleep apnoea has also been supplied to the examining doctors of drivers of large commercial vehicles required to undergo an examination. A guidance leaflet has accompanied the medical examination since June 2004 and has been updated in March 2005, May 2006, June 2007, April 2009 and October 2010.
Obstructive sleep apnoea guidance has also been sent direct to approximately 26,500 GPs who subscribe to the Electronic Medical Information System NHS Purchasing alerts in December 2008, June 2009 and in February 2010.
Network Rail
Andrew Gwynne: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the technological innovation and research undertaken by Network Rail since its inception. [38593]
Mrs Villiers: No formal assessment of technological innovation and research undertaken by Network Rail has been carried out by the Department for Transport. Sir Roy McNulty, as part of his study into value for money of the rail industry, is considering these issues in detail. His interim report has highlighted critical actions on innovation as being important to achieving sustainable cost-efficiency improvements.
Sustainable Transport Fund
Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the (a) names and (b) relevant experience is of the group of independent advisors who will form part of the assessment process for bids to the sustainable transport fund. [42912]
Norman Baker: Paragraph 3.20 of the White Paper ‘Creating Growth, Cutting Carbon’, published on 19 January, says “we will be inviting a small panel to help us in assessing Local Sustainable Transport Fund bids.”
Interested parties with experience in delivering sustainable travel measures should forward a short CV and covering letter to my Department by 11 March 2011. I then intend to select three or four individuals to assist in this process.
A14: Ipswich
Dr Poulter: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the cost was of road (a) maintenance and (b)improvements on the A14 between junctions 53 and 55 in 2009-10. [42826]
Mike Penning: Maintenance costs of £6.122 million were incurred on the A14 between junctions 53 and 55 in 2009-10. In addition, technology works over this section, as part of a complete A14 improvement project, were valued at £1.038 million.
The maintenance costs are made up as follows:
Two road maintenance schemes between the Claydon Interchange (junction 52) and the Copdock Interchange (A12/A14 junction 55) totalling £4.322 million. A safety improvement scheme (£3.472 million) involving improvements to drainage and safety barriers, and a maintenance scheme (£0.850 million) involving the refurbishment of the carriageways.
A structural maintenance scheme valued at £1.8 million.
Aviation: Conditions of Employment
Richard Fuller: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what recent assessment he has made of the likely effects of the European Aviation Safety Agency’s proposals to reduce the minimum rest period for airline pilots to seven and a half hours; (2) what steps his Department is taking to ensure that national standards on flight time limitations for commercial pilots are maintained once the European Aviation Safety Agency takes responsibility in this area. [39743]
Mrs Villiers: The European Aviation Safety Agency published draft legislation for consultation on 20 December 2010. The consultation closes on 20 March. The Civil Aviation Authority is currently reviewing the proposals. It will respond to the consultation once it has completed its review. Our aim is to ensure that the final requirements maintain a high level of safety for UK airlines.
The EU already has competence in this area and it will not be possible to apply additional national standards once the requirements have come into effect.
Stephen Lloyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what representations he has received from the airline industry on the European Aviation Safety Agency’s proposals to change flight time limitations for pilots. [39753]
Mrs Villiers: I have not so far received any formal representations from the airline industry on this matter.
Cycling: Accidents
Ms Abbott: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps he is taking to protect cyclists from injury in accidents involving heavy goods vehicles (a) in inner city areas and (b) elsewhere; and if he will make a statement. [42724]
Norman Baker: The Department for Transport is pursuing a number of measures to reduce pedal cycle fatalities in collisions with HGVs. We continue to raise the standard of driver training and support local authority initiatives in raising awareness among both cyclists and HGV drivers of the risk. In particular we support the initiatives by TfL to address this issue in London.
Vehicle safety regulation is made at the EU level and Regulations mandate side guards and improved mirrors on most HGVs. However, there is still an issue of a blind spot on many vehicles and research is currently under way how to address the issue of improving driver vision from all types of HGVs. I visited a manufacturer in my constituency last week which is addressing these specific issues.
 
Cycling: Training
Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the effects on the provision of cycle training funded by Bikeability of adopting (a) one, (b) two and (c) three year funding cycles. [42946]
Norman Baker: The Government have committed to support Bikeability cycle training for the remainder of this Parliament to signal our strong and continuing support for this programme. For 2011-12, £11 million of grant funding will be made available to local authorities and School Sports Partnerships, providing the opportunity for more than 275,000 children to receive Bikeability training. Later this year, prior to decisions on 2012-13 funding, the Department for Transport will review the allocation of Bikeability grants, including consideration of any benefits of multi-year grant arrangements.
Driving: Training 
Mr Chope: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will put driver awareness courses on a national footing so that those who elect to go on such courses as an alternative to a driving penalty are able to do so at a local centre rather than in the area where the offence was committed. [42165]
Mike Penning: These driver awareness courses are offered by police forces as alternatives to intended prosecutions. There are nationally recognised schemes developed by the National Driver Offender Retraining Schemes (NDORS) initiative and operated by many police forces.
For example, the NDORS initiative for speed awareness courses is used by the vast majority of English police forces. Hence it offers drivers resident in a participating police force area the opportunity to take a course at a local centre rather than one near where they were detected speeding, provided the force detecting the speeding also participates in the scheme.
I am working with the police towards the aim of all English forces participating in NDORS.
However, the decisions about whether, and if so what, alternatives to potential prosecution to offer are for local police forces and police authorities to make. I am therefore reluctant to dictate how police forces must operate in respect of driver awareness courses. Such decisions are rightly influenced by local priorities, policies, resources and other circumstances.
Lorries: Accidents
Meg Munn: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many (a) fatalities and (b) serious injuries were caused by accidents involving large goods vehicles in each year from 2000 to 2010. [41872]
Mike Penning: The number of (a) fatalities and (b) serious injuries in reported accidents involving a heavy goods vehicle (HGV) for each year from 2000-09 is given in the following table. It is not possible to determine from the data whether the HGV caused the accident.
Number of casualties by severity in reported accidents involving at least one HGV( 1 ) GB: 2000- 09
Number of casualties
(a) Killed(b) Seriously injured
20005602,719
20015752,564
20025322,374
20035282,111
20044491,884
20054861,785
20064191,700
20074351,574
20083681,344
20092681,171
(1) Goods vehicles with a maximum gross vehicle weight of 3.5 tonnes or over.
Data for 2010 will be published in summer 2011.
Meg Munn: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport in how many road traffic accidents involving large goods vehicles driver tiredness was found to be a contributory factor in each year from 2000 to 2010.
Mike Penning: The number of reported personal injury road accidents where the contributory factor “Fatigue” was assigned to the driver of a heavy goods vehicle (HGV) is given in the following table. It is not possible to determine from the data whether the HGV caused the accident:
Reported personal injury road accidents involving a driver of a HGV( 1) to whom a contributory factor “Fatigue” assigned: Great Britain, 2005- 09
Contributory factor( 2) : FatigueNumber of accidents
2005155
2006172
2007143
2008110
200995
(1) Goods vehicles with a maximum gross vehicle weight of 3.5 tonnes or over.
(2) Includes only personal injury road accidents where a police officer attended the scene and in which a contributory factor was reported.
Contributory factor data have only been collected since 2005. Data for 2010 will be published in summer 2011.
Lorries: Sleep Apnoea
Meg Munn: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport in how many road traffic accidents involving large goods vehicles the driver was found to be suffering from obstructive sleep apnoea in each year from 2000 to 2010. [41874]
Mike Penning: Some crashes involving heavy goods vehicles are identified as being wholly or partly caused by fatigue or falling asleep at the wheel, but there are no figures to indicate the role of obstructive sleep apnoea in most of these cases.
Meg Munn: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many heavy goods vehicle licence holders have had their licences suspended pending treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea in each year from 2000 to 2010. [41875]
Mike Penning: Driving licences cannot be suspended, instead the law allows for them to be revoked. Data on the number of licences revoked pending treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea is only held since 2004 and combines drivers with both large goods vehicle and/or passenger carrying vehicle driving entitlement. These volumes are shown in the following table.
Number
200467
200566
200656
200761
200844
200944
201037
Meg Munn: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many applications for heavy goods vehicle licences were refused because the applicant was suffering from obstructive sleep apnoea in each year from 2000 to 2010. [41967]
Mike Penning: Information on how many applications for a driving licence were refused because the applicant was suffering from sleep apnoea is only available since 2004 and combines both large goods vehicle and/or passenger carrying vehicle driving entitlement. These volumes are shown in the following table.
1 Mar 2011 : Column 336W
Number
200467
200568
200688
2007132
2008127
2009121
2010100
 
Pedestrian Crossings
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport which bodies are responsible for providing safe crossing routes for (a) school children and (b) other pedestrians at locations where lights-controlled crossings are not operational; and if he will make a statement. [42190]
Mike Penning: The provision of pedestrian crossing facilities on the public highway, including crossing facilities not controlled by traffic signals, is a matter for the relevant highway authority.
Roads: Safety
Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what estimate he has made of the change in the level of the (a) Road Safety Capital Grant and (b) Road Safety Revenue Grant reduction in each year of the Comprehensive Spending Review period. [42822]
Mike Penning: No payments of either the specific road safety capital grant or the dedicated road safety resource grant (or road safety funding stream within the area based grant) are planned to be made during the comprehensive spending review period from 2011-12 to 2014-15.
In the case of the specific road safety capital grant this is because the capital funding streams paid by the Department for Transport to local authorities have been simplified radically. The number of these transport capital funding streams has been reduced from 26 to four.
This is to assist increasing local control, participation and accountability in the use of resources by enabling local communities to decide their own priorities and set their budgets according to local, not national, priorities. More details about local transport capital funding are on the Department for Transport’s website.
In the case of revenue funding, the local transport elements of the former area based grant have been rolled into the general formula grant for the comprehensive spending review period. These local transport elements were the resource funding streams for road safety, the maintenance of de-trunked roads and rural bus subsidy grant.
The general formula grant paid to local authorities has been increased for 2011-12 and subsequent years by an adjustment of £112 million in the 2010-11 baseline. This adjusted figure for 2010-11 is then used in the calculation of the 2011-12 revenue support grant settlement.
Detailed information is published in the local government finance section of the Department of Communities and Local Government’s website at:
http://www.local.communities.gov.uk/finance/ssas.htm
UN Decade of Road Safety
Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport who is to be nominated as the national focal point for the UN Decade of Road Safety; and when that nomination is to be made to the World Health Organisation. [37839]
Mike Penning: The role of the national focal point is a working level role, dealing with information sent by the World Health Organisation such as research and providing data on request.
An official from the division dealing with road safety within the Department for Transport will be the national focal point for the UN Decade of Road Safety. We are in the process of notifying the World Health Organisation of this nomination.
Cycling: Brighton
Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether he has had discussions with Cycling England on the proposal of Brighton and Hove city council to remove cycle lanes funded by Cycling England. [42878]
Norman Baker: Neither the Secretary of State for Transport, the right hon. Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), nor I have had discussions with Cycling England on the proposal of Brighton and Hove city council to remove cycle lanes funded by Cycling England, but I understand they area following up the issue with Brighton and hove council.
Aviation: Working Hours
Mr Buckland: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether he plans to respond to the European Aviation Safety Agency’s notice of proposed amendment for flight time limitations; and if he will make a statement. [41568]
Mrs Villiers: I refer the hon. Member to my answer given to the hon. Member for Eastbourne (Stephen Lloyd) of 28 February 2011, Official Report, columns 177-78W.
Mr Buckland: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what representations he has received from the airline industry on the European Aviation Safety Agency’s proposals to change flight time limitations for pilots. [41629]
Mrs Villiers: I have not so far received any formal representations from the airline industry on this matter.
Buses: Disability Aids
Chris Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what guidance his Department issues on methods for the provision of information on buses in (a) audio and (b) visual form. [43172]
Norman Baker: The Department for Transport has commissioned research to assess the costs and benefits of installing audio visual systems on buses. The research project has brought together a cross section of stakeholders, including Guide Dogs, Royal National Institute of Blind People and Royal National Institute for Deaf People. We will be publishing the results, together with guidance, shortly.
Cycling: Accidents
Shabana Mahmood: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many cyclists were killed in road accidents in (a) Birmingham, (b) the West Midlands and (c) England in each of the last five years. [43110]
Mike Penning: The number of pedal cyclists killed in road accidents reported to the police in (a) Birmingham, (b)the West Midlands and (c) England in each of the last five years for which data are available is given in following table:
Number of fatalities
BirminghamWest MidlandsEngland
200507130
200629127
2007210129
200809102
200921193
Public Transport: Disability
Chris Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether his Department has (a) commissioned and (b)evaluated research on the (i) prevalence and (ii) adoption of audiovisual announcement systems on public transport networks in other European countries. [43176]
Norman Baker: In 2005, the Department for Transport commissioned research on ‘On-board Information Systems for bus and tram passengers’, to establish how costs of audio visual systems could be met. This research covered a range of international countries, including a number of European ones. A copy of this report has been placed in the House Library.
Public Transport: Visual Impairment
Chris Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what account his Department’s plans for an integrated transport system will take of the needs of visually-impaired passengers. [43173]
Norman Baker: The Department for Transport continues to seek to improve both access and safety to public transport, including for disabled people.
The Department aims to ensure disabled people, including those with visual impairments, are consulted on any policies that may affect them. In addition, from April 2011, the Department will be required under the Public Sector Duty of the Equality Act 2010 (“the Act”) to have due regard to the effect of any policies on the Act’s protected, groups include disabled people. All policies will have to be accompanied by an equality analysis.
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