Parliamentary Questions: November 2015

Parliamentary Questions: November 2015

2nd November

Driving: Young People

Lilian Greenwood (Nottingham South): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to his Department’s press release, Government to overhaul young driver rules in bid to improve safety and cut insurance costs, issued 25 March 2013, when he plans to publish the Green Paper on young drivers referred to in that press release.

Andrew Jones: Every death is a tragedy and is one too many. However, there is a difficult balance to strike between the safety and the freedom of our young drivers, and we are currently undertaking research into how to make our roads safer. We will explore options around how to improve learning to drive and encouraging people to practice more before they take their test.


Level Crossings

Lilian Greenwood (Nottingham South): Every death is a tragedy and is one too many. However, there is a difficult balance to strike between the safety and the freedom of our young drivers, and we are currently undertaking research into how to make our roads safer. We will explore options around how to improve learning to drive and encouraging people to practice more before they take their test.

Claire Perry: The Department continues to develop its response to the Law Commission’s recommendations on the reform of level crossing legislation.

Initial discussions with stakeholders have raised a number of concerns which the Department will need to consider further.

This is a highly complex area and we must ensure that any amendments to the legislative framework do not adversely impact on the UK’s position of having the best level crossing safety record in Europe.


 British Transport Police: Greater London

Sadiq Khan: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many British Transport Police officers were working night shifts in London on each day of September 2015.

Claire Perry: The table below sets out the number of British Transport Police (BTP) officers working in Greater London (all London boroughs) on 1 October in each year between 2010 and 2015:

2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
1,715 1,638 1,643 1,608 1,592 1,732

The table below sets out the number of officers in Greater London (all London boroughs) which were contracted to work night shifts as at 1 October in each year between 2010 and 2015:

2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
46 49 53 55 52 57

All BTP officers could potentially be rostered on to night shifts if necessary.

The table below sets out the number of BTP officers that were working night shifts in Greater London (all London Boroughs) on each day of September 2015:

01 September 2015 49
02 September 2015 62
03 September 2015 64
04 September 2015 61
05 September 2015 62
06 September 2015 59
07 September 2015 62
08 September 2015 61
09 September 2015 59
10 September 2015 57
11 September 2015 60
12 September 2015 61
13 September 2015 61
14 September 2015 57
15 September 2015 50
16 September 2015 60
17 September 2015 59
18 September 2015 59
19 September 2015 58
20 September 2015 57
21 September 2015 58
22 September 2015 57
23 September 2015 61
24 September 2015 62
25 September 2015 63
26 September 2015 60
27 September 2015 61
28 September 2015 58
29 September 2015 61
30 September 2015 55

It is important to note that the number of officers contracted and due to work night shifts would have increased if the night tube had not been deferred.

Grouped Questions: 13473 | 13474

 


 

Aviation: Noise

Mark Tami (Alyn and Deeside): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what research his Department has conducted or commissioned on (a) how noise emissions from aviation affect local communities and (b) the effectiveness of different noise mitigation approaches in reducing the number of people affected by aircraft noise.

Mr Robert Goodwill: In 2012 a National Noise Attitude Survey was carried out on behalf of the Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which included attitudes to noise from transport sources including aircraft.

In 2014/15, Ipsos/MORI conducted on behalf of the Department for Transport a survey on noise attitudes which focused on noise from civil aviation, near to major airports in England. The results of the survey are currently being analysed with a view to publishing a report next year.


M5: Stroud

Neil Carmichael (Stroud): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what progress the Highways Agency has made on noise mitigation measures on the M5 at Upton St. Leonards.

Andrew Jones: The main measures to mitigate noise are new road surfacing and noise barriers. Highways England has three resurfacing schemes in their forward programme for this area. The resurfacing will be done after essential repairs to bridge structures have been completed to avoid disruption to users of the M5.

Later this month works to inspect the condition of the noise fence from junction 11A to Gloucester Painswick bridge which covers the Upton St Leonards section of the M5 motorway will start and opportunities for a temporary noise barrier looked at.


3rd November

Mr Barry Sheerman (Huddersfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will set road casualty reduction targets.

Andrew Jones: The Government has not set road safety targets for local authorities or the police, and is not considering reinstating them. We do not believe that further persuasion is needed on the importance of road safety through “Whitehall knows best” diktats. However, local authorities and the police are free to set their own targets if they find this useful.

The Conservative Manifesto 2015 had a commitment to reduce the number of cyclists and other road users killed or injured on our roads every year. We are working closely with road safety groups to consider what more can be done and we believe that every death is a tragedy and is one too many.

Grouped Questions: 13984

 Mr Barry Sheerman (Huddersfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will publish a national road safety strategy.

Andrew Jones: The Government has not set road safety targets for local authorities or the police, and is not considering reinstating them. We do not believe that further persuasion is needed on the importance of road safety through “Whitehall knows best” diktats. However, local authorities and the police are free to set their own targets if they find this useful.

The Conservative Manifesto 2015 had a commitment to reduce the number of cyclists and other road users killed or injured on our roads every year. We are working closely with road safety groups to consider what more can be done and we believe that every death is a tragedy and is one too many.

Grouped Questions: 13985


 Public Transport: Disability

Stephen Timms (East Ham): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he is taking to involve disabled people in the design of better access to public transport.

Andrew Jones: The Department sponsors the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee (DPTAC). DPTAC has a Chair and 12 members with a range of impairments. It advises the government on transport legislation, regulations and guidance and on the transport needs of disabled people, ensuring disabled people have the same access to transport as everyone else.


Roads: Repairs and Maintenance

Danny Kinahan (South Antrim): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of safety measures used on the road network to protect road maintenance workers.

Andrew Jones: The Department for Transport and Highways England are working closely with the Highways Maintenance Term Association and the wider construction sector on safety initiatives to ensure the safety and protection of operatives working on the highway network in England.


 Roads: Safety

Sir Greg Knight (East Yorkshire): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the level of democratic oversight of road safety partnerships; and if he will make a statement.

Andrew Jones: None. This is a matter for the partnerships concerned.

 


 

Motorways

Andrew Rosindell (Romford): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans his Department has to improve the quality of roads on the motorway network.

Andrew Jones: In 2014 we announced how we were investing £15.2bn capital between 2015 and 2021 to enhance, renew and transform the strategic network, with around £6 billion to help maintain and improve the condition of the strategic road network in England, including resurfacing around 80% of the network.

Highways England are required to keep the motorway network in good condition as one of their key performance indicators.


 Motor Vehicles

Richard Burden (Birmingham Northfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many vehicles have been reassessed by the DVLA for their historic vehicle status; and how many such vehicles have (a) retained their historic status and (b) had their historic status revoked as a result of the reassessment.  

Andrew Jones: The DVLA is carrying out a targeted exercise involving a small number of historic vehicles. So far, 30 of these vehicles have retained their historic vehicle status. No vehicles have yet had their historic vehicle status removed.

 


 

Aviation: Noise

Lord Solely: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what research they have conducted into (1) understanding how noise emissions from aviation impact on local communities, and (2) the effectiveness of different noise mitigation approaches in reducing the number of individuals affected by aircraft noises.

Viscount Younger of Leckie: In 2012 a National Noise Attitude Survey was carried out on behalf of the Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which included attitudes to noise from transport sources including aircraft.

In 2014/15, Ipsos/MORI conducted on behalf of the Department for Transport a survey on noise attitudes which focused on noise from civil aviation, near to major airports in England. The results of the survey are currently being analysed with a view to publishing a report next year.

 


 

4th November

Cycling: Training

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans he has to fund Bikeability beyond 2015.

Mr Robert Goodwill: Funding for Bikeability is currently confirmed until the end of March 2016. We will take a decision on future funding for the Bikeability programme beyond March 2016 following the outcome of the Spending Review.


Aviation: Passengers

Andrew Bridgen (North West Leicestershire): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what provisions are in place to enable airports to ban passengers from their premises; under what circumstances such provisions may be used; and how many passengers were banned from (a) Leeds Bradford International, (b) Belfast International, (c) East Midlands, (d) Edinburgh, (e) Glasgow International, (f) Manchester, (g) Newcastle International, (h) London Gatwick, (i) London Luton, (j) London Stansted and (k) London Heathrow Airport in each year from 2010 to 2015 to date.

Mr Robert Goodwill: An airport company may prohibit a person from entering the Airport under provisions in their byelaws.

As this is a matter for the airport concerned the Department does not hold details of any person so prohibited.


Vehicle Number Plates

Greg Mulholland (Leeds North West): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent discussions he has had with the Information Commissioner’s Office about the DVLA selling driver registration plate numbers to car parking firms.

Andrew Jones: The table below shows the income received by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) from processing requests for information from private parking management companies over the last five financial years. The DVLA sets fees to recover the cost of processing requests and does not make a profit from providing this information.

Year Total Revenue
2010/11 £2,910,850
2011/12 £3,657,859
2012/13 £4,831,355
2013/14 £6,097,898
2014/15 £7,573,298

The DVLA releases vehicle keeper information to those who can show reasonable cause for receiving it. The following table shows the number of requests from private car parking management companies for vehicle keeper information processed via electronic links over the last five financial years.

Year Electronic Requests
2010/11 1,178,034
2011/12 1,574,397
2012/13 1,897,572
2013/14 2,430,130
2014/15 3,083,276

The vast majority of requests for vehicle keeper information are made electronically but information can also be requested using a paper application form. However, these requests come from a range of customers including private car parking management companies and the figures are not broken down by customer type.

The DVLA meets regularly with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to discuss a range of issues, including the provision of information for private parking management. The ICO’s most recent audit resulted in a high assurance rating relating to the release of information from the DVLA’s vehicle record.

Grouped Questions: 13664 | 13666

Greg Mulholland (Leeds North West): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the number of driver registration plate numbers the DVLA has sold to car parking companies in each of the last five years.

Andrew Jones: The table below shows the income received by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) from processing requests for information from private parking management companies over the last five financial years. The DVLA sets fees to recover the cost of processing requests and does not make a profit from providing this information.

Year Total Revenue
2010/11 £2,910,850
2011/12 £3,657,859
2012/13 £4,831,355
2013/14 £6,097,898
2014/15 £7,573,298

The DVLA releases vehicle keeper information to those who can show reasonable cause for receiving it. The following table shows the number of requests from private car parking management companies for vehicle keeper information processed via electronic links over the last five financial years.

Year Electronic Requests
2010/11 1,178,034
2011/12 1,574,397
2012/13 1,897,572
2013/14 2,430,130
2014/15 3,083,276

The vast majority of requests for vehicle keeper information are made electronically but information can also be requested using a paper application form. However, these requests come from a range of customers including private car parking management companies and the figures are not broken down by customer type.

The DVLA meets regularly with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to discuss a range of issues, including the provision of information for private parking management. The ICO’s most recent audit resulted in a high assurance rating relating to the release of information from the DVLA’s vehicle record. [Grouped Questions: 13664 | 13667]

Greg Mulholland (Leeds North West): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much revenue the DVLA has received from selling driver registration plate numbers to car parking companies in each of the last five years.

Andrew Jones: The table below shows the income received by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) from processing requests for information from private parking management companies over the last five financial years. The DVLA sets fees to recover the cost of processing requests and does not make a profit from providing this information.

Year Total Revenue
2010/11 £2,910,850
2011/12 £3,657,859
2012/13 £4,831,355
2013/14 £6,097,898
2014/15 £7,573,298

The DVLA releases vehicle keeper information to those who can show reasonable cause for receiving it. The following table shows the number of requests from private car parking management companies for vehicle keeper information processed via electronic links over the last five financial years.

Year Electronic Requests
2010/11 1,178,034
2011/12 1,574,397
2012/13 1,897,572
2013/14 2,430,130
2014/15 3,083,276

The vast majority of requests for vehicle keeper information are made electronically but information can also be requested using a paper application form. However, these requests come from a range of customers including private car parking management companies and the figures are not broken down by customer type.

The DVLA meets regularly with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to discuss a range of issues, including the provision of information for private parking management. The ICO’s most recent audit resulted in a high assurance rating relating to the release of information from the DVLA’s vehicle record. [Grouped Questions: 13666 | 13667]

 


 

Public Transport Disability

Graeme Morris (Easington): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of his Department’s policies on increasing access to public transport for disabled passengers.

Andrew Jones: We have made significant progress since 2010 on increasing access to public transport.

Compliance with bus accessibility regulations is 89% of buses in England in 2015 compared to 59% in 2009-10; while 60% of rail vehicles, up from less than 40% in 2010, were built or fully refurbished to modern access standards.

By the end of this year Access for All will have completed more than 150 step-free routes at rail stations against a target of 125. More than 1,200 stations have also received smaller scale improvements. To build on this success £160m has been allocated to another 68 stations to be delivered by 2019.

 


 

Roads: Repairs and Maintenance

Danny Kinahan (South Antrim): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the role of automated cone laying and retrieval on road maintenance worker safety.

Andrew Jones: Highways England and the Department for Transport (DfT) fully support the adoption of innovative techniques such as automated cone laying, where this will realise safety benefits for road maintenance workers. The then Highways Agency tested one machine – ‘Conemaster’ built by Jordan products Ltd., some years ago. On-road trials facilitated by the Highways Agency were successful and this indicated that the technique did offer positive safety benefits. In addition, the Highways Agency subsequently commissioned an independent economic assessment of the benefits of Conemaster in 2011. The final report, produced early 2012, concluded that the cone laying machine also offered positive economic benefits.

Highways England has a client role and it is for its supply chain to design and deliver traffic management solutions and it is for these suppliers to procure such equipment. The DfT has worked to assist Conemaster in its efforts to market its product and a meeting was facilitated with the then Highways Agency’s suppliers to demonstrate the benefits of the product.


Aircraft: Accidents

Jim Shannon (Strangford): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many accidents involving aircraft there have been in the UK in each of the last five years.

Mr Robert Goodwill: Statistics for aircraft accidents in the UK are kept by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). The Air Accidents Investigation Branch is required to investigate events which come within the definition of accident contained in Article 1 of the EU Regulation 996/2010. AAIB also investigates “serious incidents” as defined by the Regulation.

The table below sets out the number of investigations that the AAIB has undertaken. These includes investigations into serious incidents involving commercial air transport aircraft for the sake of completeness.

Year No of AAIB Investigations Commenced
2014 236
2013 245
2012 264
2011 251
2010 248

CAA statistics differ slightly as they are based on reports made under the mandatory occurrence reporting requirements.


 

Driving Under the Influence

Lord Brooke of Alverthorpe: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Kramer on 19 March (HL5704), whether they plan to review the Coalition Government’s policy and to seek funding from the drinks industry to fund the Department for Transport’s drink driving campaigns.

Viscount Younger of Leckie: Sources of funding for campaign spend are kept under review but we currently have no plans to introduce a levy on the drinks industry to fund the drink drive campaign.

Instead our aim is to develop partnerships with brands who can provide incentives to help drivers avoid alcohol if they are driving, or to help those people who are drinking get home safely without driving. To date we have secured the following partnerships so far for our 2015 campaign:

– Coca Cola, who will be running their designated driver campaign, rewarding designated drivers with a buy-one-get-one-free offer on coke drinks in thousands of venues during the festive season.

– Budweiser who also promote and celebrate the important role of designated driver.

– Johnnie Walker, who ask drivers to take a pledge to never drink and drive, in return for discounted safe journeys home.

These initiatives are all completely funded by the partner and add significant value to the campaign.

We will continue to seek further partnerships with commercial brands who can extend the reach and impact of our campaigns.


5th November

Roads

Richard Burden (Birmingham, Northfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the respective roles of (a) Highways England and (b) its proposed programme management partner in the delivery of the Road Investment Strategy Programme.

Andrew Jones: The government is tripling the capital investment in the Strategic Road Network. Highways England have been given responsibility for delivery of the Road Investment Strategy and operation of the network.

A four year term contract was tendered competitively by Highways England to a consortium consisting of CH2M Hill, Mace and PwC (CMP) in early July 2015 to help provide additional support to improve their capability and available resources to deliver an increasingly demanding and complex programme.

This has no impact on the role, responsibilities and requirements of Highways England. [Grouped Questions: 14426 | 14446 ]


 

Highways England

Richard Burden (Birmingham Northfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what discussions he has had with Highways England on the appointment of a programme management partner; and if he will make a statement.

Andrew Jones: The government is tripling the capital investment in the Strategic Road Network. Highways England have been given responsibility for delivery of the Road Investment Strategy and operation of the network.

A four year term contract was tendered competitively by Highways England to a consortium consisting of CH2M Hill, Mace and PwC (CMP) in early July 2015 to help provide additional support to improve their capability and available resources to deliver an increasingly demanding and complex programme.

This has no impact on the role, responsibilities and requirements of Highways England. [Grouped Questions: 14425 | 14446 ]

 


 

Driving: Qualifications

Melanie Onn (Great Grimsby): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the economic cost of the shortage of Certificate of Professional Competence qualified drivers.

Andrew Jones: The Department for Transport has not made an estimate on the economic effect of a potential driver shortage. It is aware of extensive reports about pressures on wages, the recruitment of drivers from outside the UK and delayed deliveries.

Melanie Onn (Great Grimsby): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the effect on businesses in the Humber area of the shortage of Certificate of Professional Competence qualified drivers.

Andrew Jones: The Department for Transport has not made any assessment on the economic effect of a potential driver shortage specific to the Humber area.

 

Melanie Onn (Great Grimsby): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the effect of the cost of acquiring a Certificate in Professional Competence on access to such certificates for young people.

Andrew Jones: The Department for Transport has not made any assessments on the effect of the cost of acquiring a Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) on access to such Certificates for young people.

In order to allow newly qualified drivers to gain experience, the department allows those who have passed the theory test (module one) and practical driving test (module three) to enrol on an approved National Vocational Training (NVT) programme and defer taking the Driver CPC theory and practical tests. This allows a driver to work professionally for up to 12 months whilst working towards a Driver CPC qualification.

Melanie Onn: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the current shortage of Certificate of Professional Competence qualified drivers is for the logistics industry; and what the shortage forecast for such drivers is expected to be in (a) 2015-16, (b) 2016-17 and (c) 2017-18.

Andrew Jones: Government data (the Office of National Statistics Labour Force Survey) estimates there are 299,000 large goods vehicle drivers, up 40,000 on 2013. Other people require Certificates of Professional Competence to drive large goods vehicles as part of other jobs or to drive public service vehicles. The Department for Transport has not estimated or forecast the shortage of large goods vehicle drivers, although it recognises there is a significant shortage and is aware of industry estimates of its size.

Prior to the introduction of the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC) the department has worked closely with stakeholders who provided estimates of how many Driver Qualification Cards (DQCs) it was necessary to issue to professional drivers in order to ensure continuity of service. Estimates provided ranged from 500,000 to 750,000. The department has now issued over 900,000 DQCs and continues to work with the logistics sector’s representative groups to support them in creating industry-led solutions to any potential shortage of professional drivers.


 Motor Vehicles

John Spellar (Warley): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many (a) passenger vehicles, (b) vans, (c) public service vehicles and (d) heavy goods vehicles are licensed; and how many vehicles in each such category (i) use petrol, (ii) use diesel and (iii) are hybrid.

Andrew Jones: The numbers of licensed vehicles in the categories requested are shown in the table below.

Licensed vehicles of selected types of propulsion type in the UK as at 30 June 2015
Vehicle Body Type Petrol Diesel Hybrid Other Total
Passenger Vehicles 1906892 11592134 22382 5956 30944434
Vans 1414 3518023 122 14328 3673873
Public Service Vehicles 4851 164107 1 504 169463
Heavy Goods Vehicles 2537 498816 0 1085 502438
Notes:
1. Vehicle types shown are based on the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency vehicle body type definitions:
Passenger vehicles = cars; Vans =Light Goods with a gross weight of up to and including 3.5 tonnes; Heavy Goods Vehicles = Goods vehicles with a gross weight of over 3.5 tonnes;
Public Service Vehicles = Buses and Coaches (including minibuses with 9-16 seats)
2. Hybrid vehicles may be under-recorded for Public Service Vehicles and Heavy Goods Vehicles: other includes gas and electric

 


 

6th November

Transport: Finance

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what his Department’s plans are for long-term local sustainable transport funding.

Andrew Jones: All future budgets, including those for sustainable transport, remain subject to Spending Review negotiations. Further information will be made available after the outcome of the Spending Review is announced on 25 November.


Motor Vehicles: Insurance

Richard Burden (Birmingham Northfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate his Department has made of how many (a) drivers and (b) drivers under 25 were using black box technology in each of the last five years.

Andrew Jones: The Department for Transport has not made any such estimates. There are a number of behavioural, educational and technological interventions that have the potential to help improve young driver safety. We need better evidence about what works best, so we’re working with insurance companies to see how we can assess the impact of telematics products on young driver safety.


Highways Agency

Richard Burden (Birmingham Northfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the efficiency savings his Department has gained from the reorganisation of the Highways Agency to Highways England; and what the budget of that body was in each of the last five years.

Andrew Jones: It is too early to estimate the efficiency savings gained from the reorganisation of Highways England which was created on 1 April 2015. The Department for Transport published the Roads Reform Programme Evaluation Framework in March. This includes a clear expectation that the evaluation will be carried out over a number of years, given the number of the changes made. In addition the Office of Rail and Road, will continue to monitor the performance of Highways England including efficiencies. The table below shows the capital expenditure of Highways England, with resource spend and the depreciation of road asset value.

Resource (excl.depreciation)(£m) Resource Depreciation (£m) Capital (£m)
2014/15 1,000 866 1,823
2013/14 1,012 929 1,425
2012/13 1,038 914 1,034
2011/12 1,145 870 1,288
2010/11 1,214 775 1,654

 


 

9th November

Aviation: Exhaust Emissions

Matthew Pennycock (Greenwich and Woolwich): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the effect of emissions containing organo-phosphates produced by aircraft engines on airline and airport staff and passengers.

Mr Robert Goodwill: The Department commissioned four scientific studies into cabin air in 2007. All studies commissioned by the Department were submitted to the Committee on Toxicity of Chemicals in Food, Consumer Products and the Environment for consideration in 2012. The Committee published a position paper on cabin air in December 2013, which can be accessed in full electronically at: http://cot.food.gov.uk/sites/default/files/cot/cotpospapcabin.pdf.

In addition to the Department’s studies, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has launched a preliminary in-flight cabin air measurement campaign in spring 2015, the results of which are expected in autumn 2016.


Cycleways

Lord Higgins: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what estimate they have made of the effect on air pollution of the construction and use of bicycle lanes, particularly in London.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: The Department for Transport has not completed any estimates specifically on the effect of construction and use of bicycle lanes on air pollution. But we recognise that encouraging car users to switch to alternative, more sustainable, forms of transport like cycling can generally have both health and carbon reduction benefits as well as improving local air quality.

When we appraise cycle schemes for funding, we apply WebTAG unit A5-1. This appraisal looks at outcomes only and does not consider impacts during the construction phase of a scheme. Where a scheme includes shifts away from mechanised modes and changes in congestion levels, we use marginal external costs, including air pollution. This is done at an individual scheme level and reported in the appraisal of each case; therefore no holistic study has been undertaken. This appraisal does not take account of potentially complex changes to motorists behaviour (such as speed and route choice) resulting from the introduction of cycle lanes.

Transport for London state that during the construction phase some localised short-term slight impacts on local air quality can be expected from the use of plant and vehicles. However, contractors are required to minimise dust and emissions to air and comply with the Greater London Authority and London Councils’ Control of Dust and Emissions from Construction and Demolition Best Practice Guidance.

Transport for London undertake air quality modelling to ascertain the impacts during operation. Schemes such as the East-West Cycle Superhighway show that the likely impact of the introduction of cycle lanes and changes to the road layout on air quality ranges from adverse to beneficial. The study shows that changes in traffic will redistribute emissions across the study area but will not increase overall emission levels.


Local Sustainable Transport Fund

Baroness Randerson: To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they plan to continue with the Local Sustainable Transport Fund beyond 2016; and if not, whether they plan to replace it with an alternative fund for sustainable transport.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: All future budgets, including those for the Local Sustainable Transport Fund, remain subject to Spending Review negotiations. Further information will be made available after the outcome of the Spending Review is announced on 25 November.


Airports: Noise

Baroness Randerson: To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they have plans to reform and improve the system by which noise associated with airports is measured in order to make it more closely aligned with systems used across Europe.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: Under the Environmental Noise Directive, major airports in the EU including the UK are required to map for noise every 5 years using the same noise metrics.

In addition, for Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted the Environmental Research and Consultancy Department of the CAA map the average summer day and night exposure contours annually. Other Airports in the UK, may map for noise using metrics they think the most appropriate.


Speed Limits

Baroness Randerson: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what is their assessment of the recent recommendations in a report by Brake that local authorities need simplified powers to introduce 20 mph zones.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: Local authorities have sufficient powers to introduce 20 mph zones. The Department issued revised guidance in January 2013 aimed mainly at traffic authorities who are responsible for setting local speed limits. This guidance was revised following full public consultation in Summer 2012 and is available online on GOV.UK


10th November

Parking: Pedestrian Areas

Ian Austin (Dudley North): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many Traffic Regulation Orders have been introduced by local authorities to tackle pavement parking since 2011.

Andrew Jones: This information is not held. Local authorities have powers under the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 to make Traffic Regulation Orders and the Department for Transport is not involved in this process.


Cycling

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what take-up there has been of the cycle to work salary sacrifice scheme since it started.

Mr Robert Goodwill: The Department does not retain data on the uptake of the Cycle to Work scheme. The Scheme is an employee benefit covered by an exemption and therefore employers do not have to make an annual tax return regarding the benefit.

However the Cycle to Work Alliance has published reports containing information on take up of the scheme: http://www.cycletoworkalliance.org.uk/news.html, and they state that in 2014 record numbers of employees participated in the cycle to work scheme.


 

Cycling and Walking: Children

Lilian Greenwood (Nottingham South): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many and what proportion of children have (a) walked and (b) cycled to school in each year since 2009-10.

Mr Robert Goodwill: Please see below the proportion and amount of children using walking and cycling to school. The years shown are approximately calendar years and not academic years. The figures for 2015 will be published at a later date.

Percentages

Walking Cycling
2005 47 1.6
2006 46 2.4
2007 46 1.3
2008 44 2.1
2009 44 2.4
2010 42 1.6
2011 43 2.3
2012 41 2.1
2013 42 1.3
2014 42 2.3

Actual Amounts to the nearest hundred

Walking Cycling
2005 3,509,700 123,100
2006 3,465,900 183,700
2007 3,459,900 100,100
2008 3,219,000 161,000
2009 3,246,500 179,300
2010 3,109,200 124,700
2011 3,194,200 172,500
2012 3,006,000 159,700
2013 3,094,100 100,300
2014 3,175,200 177,300

 


 

Motor Vehicles: Excise Duty

Chi Onwurah (Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Central): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what safeguards are in place to avoid mistakenly withdrawing motor tax following erroneous or malicious notification of cars being exported or going off road.

Andrew Jones: The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) requires specific information or documentation before it will process a notification that a vehicle has been exported or taken off the road.

In order to be able to make such notifications electronically (where such a service is available) a unique reference number from the vehicle registration certificate and/or vehicle excise duty renewal letter must be used. This helps to ensure that it is the registered keeper of the vehicle making the notification.

If the notification cannot be made electronically, the registered keeper must use the appropriate section of the vehicle registration certificate or write to the DVLA.

When the off road or export notification has updated the DVLA’s records, a refund of any remaining vehicle excise duty will be issued to the registered keeper. Unexpectedly receiving this payment should prompt the keeper to contact the DVLA if they did not make the notification themselves.

 


 

Motor Vehicles: Exhaust Emissions

Richard Burden (Birmingham Northfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the extent to which emissions type approval requirements are met during normal on road usage of each category of road vehicle.

Andrew Jones: The Government takes the unacceptable actions of Volkswagen (VW) Group extremely seriously. As we investigate what went wrong and what we can do to stop it happening again, the priority of course remains to protect the public. We expect VW to take every step necessary to protect its UK customers, but it is right that the Government carry out their own thorough and independent investigation.

A written statement was made today (10 November) informing the House of the latest developments on the Department for Transport’s vehicle emissions testing programme, following the revelations that VW had fitted defeat devices to some of its vehicles.

The Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) is working to confirm that this issue is not industry wide. They have tested two VW group vehicles known to contain a defeat device and will rerun laboratory tests on popular cars sold in the UK to compare real world driving emissions against laboratory performance. This will include measuring CO2 .

The Secretary of State spoke to Dr Herbert Deiss of VW on 4 November to discuss CO2 emissions, seeking information on those vehicles affected in the UK and the extent of the discrepancy. VW have stated that they are working hard to clarify the situation and are liaising with relevant approval authorities.

The Secretary of State has written jointly with the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills to VW seeking clarification on several issues. Separately, officials from the Department for Transport, and its Agencies have held a number of discussions with VW regarding the recall of affected vehicles.

The Department for Transport has not made a specific assessment of on road emissions in relation to type approval requirements, but officials are aware of the findings in published reports suggesting significant differences. [Grouped Questions: 14759 | 14778 | 14846 | 14847]


Motor Vehicles: Foreign Nationals

Craig MacKinlay (South Thanet): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many foreign vehicles that had overstayed the permitted six months in the UK were identified as a result of the information sharing trial between the police service and HM Revenue and Customs that ran from November 2014 to February 2015; how many such vehicles were impounded; how much was raised in fines in that trial; and what plans his Department has to introduce such a scheme permanently.

Andrew Jones: During the trial the police used a combination of information provided by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and on-road interviews to establish whether a vehicle had overstayed the six-month exemption and/or if the vehicle keeper was a resident in the UK.

Of the 703 vehicles impounded during the trial, 162 were included in the HMRC’s data set.

The table below shows the amounts awarded by the courts following successful prosecutions:

Fines Costs awarded to the DVLA Back Duty paid
£40,259 £12,540 £12,215.10

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) also received £20,751 from out of court settlement payments.

The trial was carried out from within existing resources.

A full analysis of the trial is underway and will inform the way forward. Police forces which are authorised by the DVLA to seize unlicensed vehicles continue to target non-compliant foreign registered vehicles.


Transport: Technology

Richard Burden (Birmingham Northfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of Innovate UK’s contribution to the development of technologies in (a) aviation, (b) road transport and (c) ports and shipping.

Mr Robert Goodwill: The Department for Transport (DfT) works collaboratively with Innovate UK through a range of mechanisms to support technological development and innovation in all modes of transport. DfT and Innovate UK work together to support wider government objectives to develop the nation’s science and research capability to support UK economic growth. However, the Department has not made any separate assessment of Innovate UK’s contribution to the development of technologies in the transport sector. Innovate UK undertakes well established economic evaluations on the effectiveness and impact of its activities and are reported to the Department for Business Innovation and Skills, as Innovate UK’s departmental sponsor.


Roads: Repairs and Maintenance

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many roads were resurfaced in 2014-15.

Andrew Jones: The Department for Transport regularly publishes Official Statistics on how many roads managed by local highway authorities were resurfaced. Figures for 2014/15 are not currently available and will be published in the next annual Road Conditions in England statistical release, provisionally scheduled for March 2016.

Poorly maintained local roads are a menace to all road users. The Government is committed to helping local authorities end the misery caused by potholes. Between 2010 and 2015 we increased funding by £1 billion from the previous five year period (2005-10) and have also pledged a further £6 billion of funding to 2021. It is the first time councils have been given locked-in funding over this length of time, which will help them plan ahead and save money for the taxpayer. This increased funding will also reward those areas that demonstrate they are delivering value for money in carrying out cost effective improvements.

The Department does not publish Official Statistics on resurfacing for the Strategic Road Network (SRN). The Highways Agency Annual Report for 2014/15 states that 2,900 lane kilometres of resurfacing took place on the SRN in that year. This report can be accessed via the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/highways-agency-annual-report-and-accounts-2014-to-2015. Over the course of this Parliament we plan to resurface 80% of the Strategic Road Network.

 


 

Roads: Accidents

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the reasons for the increase in the amount paid in road user compensation claims by local authorities in England outside London from 2012-13 to 2013-14.

Andrew Jones: The management and defence of insurance claims on the local highway network is entirely a matter for local highway authorities.

The Department for Transport’s road condition statistics for 2013-14 suggest an improvement to the local road network, since 2012-13.

The Department supports local authorities to manage their road networks efficiently and effectively, with record funding of £6billion from 2015 to 2021. Also, from 2016-17, the Department is introducing a Local Highways Maintenance Incentive Fund, to reward those authorities who are demonstrating good practice in this regard. The assessment of local authorities’ eligibility for this Fund includes scoring of the effectiveness of their asset management and risk management approaches.


Motor Vehicles: Liquefied Petroleum Gas

Alex Cunningham (Stockton North): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department has met vehicle manufacturers to discuss the availability of liquid petroleum gas vehicle models in the UK market and their potential effect on air quality.

Andrew Jones: As part of a consultation in 2014 on amendments to the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO) the department considered the potential benefits of biopropane in delivering GHG savings. In recognition of this, the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation was subsequently amended to increase rewards for suppliers of that fuel from April 2015.

The department, working with the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs, have evaluated a range of options for tackling poor air quality; this formed the basis of the Government’s draft air quality plans that recently went to public consultation. Switching to LPG can provide air quality benefits but may not be easily deployed in all vehicle types.

As part of the department’s 2014 Clean Vehicle Technology Fund (CVTF) grant scheme, Birmingham City Council were awarded £500,000 to enable the conversion of 80 older black cabs from diesel to LPG which will help improve air quality on some of the most polluted roads. There is a possibility of funding through the current CVTF grant scheme being used to support further LPG conversions in other areas.

We are considering many competing priorities across Government as part of the Spending Review, including measures to tackle air quality pollutants and reduce other harmful emissions. The outcome of the Spending Review will be announced later in the autumn.

The department regularly meets with motor manufacturers and their representative body the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Discussions on how manufacturers can act to tackle poor air quality cover a range of measures. [Grouped Questions: 14766 | 14692 | 14696]


Electric Vehicles

Alex Cunningham (Stockton North): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the (a) number of electric charging points in air quality management areas, (b) number of such points needed to have an effect on air quality and (c) associated costs of upgrading the necessary grid infrastructure.

Andrew Jones: The Government wants almost every car and van to be a zero emission vehicle by 2050 and is investing £500m between 2015 and 2020 to help deliver this. The long-term transition to ultra low emission vehicles can help improve local air quality, and will also lower UK greenhouse gas emissions and provide high value jobs and growth, but our modelling suggests that even very rapid uptake can have only a marginal impact on today’s air quality problems because of the time taken to turn over the vehicle fleet.

We are aware that a number of local authorities have been assessing electric car charging point requirements in air quality management areas.

The Government is considering future grid and chargepoint requirements as part of its planning for this transition. The UK already has the largest network of rapid chargepoints across Europe and over 6000 publically accessible chargepoints have been part-funded by the Government. We will continue to collaborate with industry to ensure that the UK’s infrastructure network meets the needs of electric vehicle drivers. [Grouped Questions: 14767]


Road Traffic Offences: EU Action

Graham Stringer (Blackley and Broughton): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, on what date he plans to implement the EU Cross Border Enforcement Directive.

Andrew Jones: The UK is required to transpose the EU Directive 2015/413 on the Cross Border Exchange of Information on Road Safety Related Traffic Offences by 6 May 2017. Work is currently underway to implement the relevant legal changes by this date. Explanatory notes will accompany the secondary legislation implementing the data sharing requirements and these will be made public when the legislation is tabled. [Grouped Questions: 14493]

Graham Stringer (Blackley and Broughton): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he plans to issue guidance on the implementation of the EU Cross Border Enforcement Directive.

Andrew Jones: The UK is required to transpose the EU Directive 2015/413 on the Cross Border Exchange of Information on Road Safety Related Traffic Offences by 6 May 2017. Work is currently underway to implement the relevant legal changes by this date. Explanatory notes will accompany the secondary legislation implementing the data sharing requirements and these will be made public when the legislation is tabled. [Grouped Questions: 14493]


Public Transport: Disability

Jim Shannon (Strangford): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that drivers on public transport are trained to assist disabled passengers.

Andrew Jones: The Department for Transport (DfT) has work closely with the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee to commission work to evaluate the existing Disabled Awareness Training and to produce some guidelines in best practice.

Since September 2008 all professional bus and coach drivers have been required to hold a Certificate of Professional Competence as a requirement of the EU Directive 2003/59. Disability Awareness Training is currently available to all drivers as part of the periodic Certificate of Professional Competence training syllabus. The bus industry has reported that virtually all drivers have now undertaken Disability Awareness Training and DfT will continue to work with the industry to encourage the further uptake of disability awareness training by bus and coach drivers.

The standards that taxi and PHV drivers have to meet is a matter for individual local licensing authorities. DfT Best Practice Guidance for taxi and PHV licensing says that licensing authorities should consider requiring or encouraging their drivers to undertake disability awareness training. According to DfT’s 2015 taxi and PHV statistical survey, 104 licensing authorities in England and Wales require taxi drivers to undergo disability awareness training.

In the rail industry awareness training is mandatory for all customer facing staff and managers.

 


 

Roads: Finance

Richard Burden (Birmingham Northfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to paragraph 15 of the Office of Rail and Road’s report, Monitoring Highways England, published in October 2015, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of existing data on the delivery of the road investment programme.

Andrew Jones: A key element of the recent Roads Reform work was the appointment of the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) as the independent monitor of Highways England. The ORR will be working with Highways England to ensure that they have the necessary data and information to perform their role effectively.


Office of Road and Rail

Richard Burden (Birmingham Northfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the Office of Road and Rail (ORR) monitoring framework; and what guidance he has provided to the ORR as it develops its enforcement plan.

Claire Perry: In terms of rail, Ministers and Department for Transport officials regularly discuss the regulation of Network Rail and the railways with the Office of Rail and Road (ORR).

In 2015 ORR has carried out consultations on both its railways and Highways Monitoring enforcement policies. DfT responded to both consultations. I understand ORR will publish revised policies in due course.

In relation to monitoring Highways England, the Infrastructure Act 2015 conferred the monitoring function on ORR and Highways England was appointed as a Strategic Highways Company on 1 April 2015.

The ORR Highways Monitor has been provided with statutory guidance to develop its enforcement plan. This statutory guidance was jointly issued with HM Treasury on 20 March 2015 and can be found on the gov.uk website.


 Aviation: Pregnant Women

The Countess of Marr: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon on 23 July (HL1538), whether workplace exposure limits apply legally to passengers as well as crew; and what evidence they have that damage to a foetus cannot occur from a single exposure at those limits.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: Air passengers, and by extrapolation an unborn child, are within the scope of workplace exposure limits, which take into account susceptible groups and therefore would protect pregnant women.

No specific evidence was collected during the studies regarding damage occurring to a foetus from a single exposure at workplace exposure limits.

 


 

Aircraft: Air Conditioning

The Countess of Marr: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon on 8 July (HL831), how many of the recorded fume or smell events during the 100 flights referred to in that answer were reported to the Civil Aviation Authority under the mandatory reporting scheme.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: No fume event occurred during this study (Aircraft Cabin Air Sampling Study, Cranfield University, 2011) which triggered the airline’s formal reporting procedures to the Civil Aviation Authority.


Speed Limits: Rural Areas

Lord Greaves: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the case for the introduction of a 50 mile per hour speed limit on single-carriageway rural roads, and whether they plan to consult on such a proposal.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: There are no plans to decrease the speed limit to 50 mph on single carriageway rural roads.

The Department for Transport has provided guidance to traffic authorities in the Speed Limit Circular 01/2013 – Setting Local Speed Limits. This encourages traffic authorities to keep speed limits under review, and to consider lower speed limits than the default, especially where there may be a relatively high number of bends, junctions or accesses.


 

M1 Speed Limits

Lord Blunkett: To ask Her Majesty’s Government when the 50 mile per hour limit on the M1 between junctions 19 and 15 will be lifted, in the light of the fact that work there has been suspended.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: Highways England reports that Junction 15 to 16: traffic management was lifted in September 2015 and Junction 16 to 19: traffic management will be lifted in stages. It will be completely removed by the end of November 2015.


A1: Accidents

Lord Blunkett: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, following the accident on the M1 on 12 October, how long it took the Highways Agency to reopen junction 25 on the southbound carriageways, and how far north diversions were put in place.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: Highways England report that the incident occurred around 2:15 am, with the carriageway fully reopened by 9:25 pm. Diversions were initially put in place from junction 25 of the M1, with traffic diverted onto the A52 westbound, the A5111 southbound, the A6 southbound and the A50 eastbound, to re-join the M1 at junction 24. Unfortunately, there was a second incident on the slip road of the M1 at junction 25, resulting in a lane being closed. This meant the M1 closure was extended further north to junction 26 until this incident was cleared.

Variable Message Signs were set prior to junction 38, in order to encourage drivers to divert via the A38. In addition, messages were displayed on the M62, A1(M), M18, A46, A52 and A38.

 


Level Crossings: Plumpton Green

Baroness Bakewell of Hardington Mandeville: To ask Her Majesty’s Government (1) whether they consider the action of Network Rail in closing the level crossing in the East Sussex village of Plumpton Green acceptable, and (2) whether they will call on Network Rail to re-open the affected road running through the village as a matter of urgency; and what arrangements will be made for emergency vehicles, access for disabled people and parents trying to get their children to local schools.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: Whilst Network Rail has an otherwise excellent record of completing works at the 6,200 level crossings which it manages with minimal disruption, it is highly regrettable that there appears to have been a lapse in project management in this particular case.

The impact which the continued closure of the crossing is having on the lives of local residents and businesses is not acceptable. Ministers have raised this matter with Network Rail at the highest level to request that the company urgently re-doubles its efforts in partnership with local stakeholders to find a solution and ensure that the crossing can re-open as quickly as possible.


13th November

Roads: Accidents

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many deaths occurred on rural roads in 2014 to 2015.

Andrew Jones: In 2014, 1,063 people were killed in reported personal injury road accidents on rural roads in Great Britain. This compares to an annual average of 1,702 people killed in reported personal injury road accidents on rural roads in Great Britain over 2005-2009.

Rural roads are roads outside settlements with a population of 10 thousand or more, excluding motorways.

Data for 2015 will be available in June 2016.

 


 

Lighting

Alex Cunningham (Stockton North): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much funding his Department has allocated to reducing light pollution in the next five financial years.

Andrew Jones: When environmental impacts of new transport infrastructure projects are identified as part of the assessment and design process, appropriate mitigation is funded from within the budget for that project.

As part of the Road Investment Strategy, Highways England also has a £300m environment fund to deliver environmental improvements on their network, both through retrofitting measures on the existing road network and maximizing opportunities offered by new road schemes. Where there is a strong case, some of this fund could support projects which reduce light pollution.

 


 

16th November

Motor Vehicles: Insurance

Mr Roger Godsiff (Birmingham, Hall Green): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department has had discussions with the car insurance sector regarding (a) the cost of premiums and (b) the variations in that cost around the UK.

Andrew Jones: The Department has held a number of meetings with the motor insurance industry on a range of topics. The cost of motor insurance is the responsibility of insurers based on the applicant’s risk. This includes factors such as the driver’s age, driving record, type of vehicle and where they live. Data from the ABI’s quarterly average private comprehensive tracker shows that the average premium in Quarter 3 2015 is 6.7% lower than in Quarter 3 2012.


 

17th November

Cycling and Walking

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, for what reasons the consultation on the Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy will not take place until spring 2016.

Mr Robert Goodwill: The first Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy will consist of a number of distinct elements that need to be produced prior to formal consultation. My Department has already begun work on these elements which will include a Statement of Funds Available and a National Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan, as well as establishing appropriate governance arrangements. Although the formal consultation will not be till the spring, we are engaging with stakeholder groups throughout development.


Cycling

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will expand the Cycle to Work salary-sacrifice scheme to provide employees with access to tax-free physical activity accessories and personalised activity plans for themselves and their families.

Mr Robert Goodwill: The Finance Act 1999 and the Income Tax (Earnings and Pensions) Act 2003 introduced an annual tax exemption, which allows employers to loan cycles and cyclists’ safety equipment to employees as a tax-free benefit. The Cycle to Work scheme is not run by Government but was created by the cycle industry to take advantage of the tax exemption. The Department, in co-operation with the then Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), Office of Fair Trading (OFT) and the cycle industry, published guidance in June 2005. As there are qualifying criteria in order to be eligible for the tax exemption, any changes to the scheme should be referred to HM Revenue and Customs.


Taxis: Disability

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate his Department has made of how many taxi drivers have undergone disability awareness training since the Law Commission’s recommendation on that subject published in its report, Taxi and Private Hire Services, on 23 May 2014.

Andrew Jones: The results of the Department’s taxi survey in 2015 showed that 103 licensing authorities in England and Wales out of 313 responding authorities require taxi drivers to undergo disability awareness training. This compares to 67 licensing authorities in 2009 from 276 responses.

We do not keep statistics on the number of drivers who have undergone disability awareness training since May 2014.

 


 

Aviation: Passengers

Danny Kinahan (South Antrim): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will support Jet2.com’s Onboard Together campaign to reduce disruptive behaviour on aircraft.

Mr Robert Goodwill: Last month I met with the management of Jet2.com to discuss their work on reducing disruptive behaviour on aircraft. The Government supports the aviation industry’s efforts to find solutions to the issue of disruptive passengers. The Government encourages collaboration across the industry to tackle the problem, including airlines, airports, retail outlets and the police working together to ensure consistent approach and messaging.


 

Roads: Safety

Lord Browne of Belmont: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the effectiveness of road safety awareness educational programmes in reducing accidents.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: Road safety education includes a range of interventions including educational courses and publicity campaigns.

The Department funds the THINK! road safety publicity campaign. We evaluate the campaign to ensure it is effective, that we continually improve performance; and that we ultimately deliver value for money for the taxpayer.

Prior to each campaign we set communication objectives and key performance indicators. We measure progress against these by running surveys with our target audience before and immediately after the campaign. We have seen positive shifts in key performance indicators for the majority of our campaigns. All of our recent campaign evaluation reports are published on gov.uk[1].

In the long run, positive changes in key performance indicators on campaigns such as speeding, drink driving and seatbelts have correlated with fewer drivers exceeding the speed limit, fewer accidents involving drink driving and higher seatbelt wearing rates; and ultimately to fewer road casualties.

Publicity campaigns are part of the solution to reduce road casualties and work best when used alongside enforcement and engineering interventions. Due to the multiple factors affecting casualties (weather, road conditions, traffic levels, the economy etc.) it is difficult to demonstrate a causal relationship with a specific intervention. However, in 2012 the department commissioned an independent agency to evaluate the impact drink drive campaigns have had on casualties. They used econometric modelling to estimate that over a 30 year period, drink drive communication campaigns have saved almost 2,000 lives and prevented over 10,000 serious injuries[2].

In 2013, the Transport Research Laboratory published[3] a review and synthesis of evidence on the effectiveness of pre-driver education and training for those under 17 years of age which was undertaken for the Coalition Government. The findings showed that very few interventions had been robustly evaluated and that the evidence base around pre-driver interventions was weak. The Government recently commissioned an evidence base review, to build on existing work, to help us to understand the effectiveness of a range of pre- and post-test behavioural and technological interventions for young drivers. The Government is currently also funding an evaluation of the effectiveness of speed awareness courses.

[1] https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/think-communication-activity

[2] https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/drink-drive-30-years-of-communication

[3] https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/249282/novice-driver-research-findings.pdf

 


 

Unmanned Aviation Vehicles

Lord Fearn: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what control there is over the flight of drones in the United Kingdom.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: Article 166 of the UK Air Navigation order (ANO) 2009 requires operators of RPAS to maintain direct, unaided visual contact with the aircraft sufficient to monitor its flight path in relation to other aircraft, persons, vehicles, vessels and structures for the purposes of avoiding collisions. It also states that an operator may only fly the aircraft if they are reasonably satisfied that the flight can safely be made.

In addition, Article 138 of the ANO 2009, which also applies to RPAS, states that “a person must not recklessly or negligently cause or permit an aircraft to endanger any person or property.” This includes persons within another aircraft, and of course the aircraft that those persons are within. The government expects users to understand and comply with this type of regulation which has been made in place for many years, albeit covering the flight of the more traditional model aircraft.

Safety and Security must always be the overriding priority and both commercial and leisure operators most operate drones responsibly and within the rules. I am able to confirm that with regards to the policing and monitoring of such vehicles the Police has provided initial guidance to constabularies across the UK.

Operators of RPAS that collect personal data must comply with the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA) unless a relevant exemption applies. The requirements of the DPA are regulated by the independent Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).


 18th November

Driving: Licencing

Tom Blenkinsop (Middlesborough South and East Cleveland): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent assessment he has made of the time the DVLA takes to process reapplications for a driving license after a suspension of that license for medical reasons.

Andrew Jones: The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency does not hold specific information about the processing times for driving licence applications, which were submitted following the revocation of a licence for medical reasons.

The DVLA aims to complete 90% of all cases that require further medical investigations within 90 working days and is working hard to identify ways of improving the time taken to deal with these cases. Additional caseworkers and medical advisers have been employed and new processes introduced to speed up the time it takes to receive the necessary information. Longer term, the DVLA is considering digital solutions to improve the service it provides in this area.

 


 

19th November

Driving: Mobile Phones

Richard Burden (Birmingham Northfield): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the finding in the RAC report, Motoring 2015, published in September 2015, that 12 per cent of motorists think it is acceptable to make a short call on a hand-held mobile device whilst driving; and what measures his Department plans to take to research the potential effectiveness and enforcement of legislation on the use of such devices for (a) phone calls and (b) using social media whilst driving.

Andrew Jones: It is illegal to use a hand held device to make phone calls or use social media whilst driving. The Department is considering the findings of the research study undertaken by the Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) which looked at the prevalence of phone use across England and Scotland. This study will help inform future policy decisions. Effective enforcement will remain a key priority. The previous Government in 2013 increased the fixed penalty level for using a mobile phone at the wheel to £100 and the Department will continue to keep further deterrent measures under consideration.

 


 

20th November

Roads: Repairs and Maintenance

Mrs Maria Miller (Basingstoke): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, for what reasons section 80 of the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 has not been brought into force.

Andrew Jones: Section 80 of the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 contains a duty on persons carrying out works in the carriageway. As the question indicates, this has never been brought into force. It concerns occasions where a person undertaking works in the street finds apparatus belonging to an undertaker that does not appear or differs from the underground asset records provided. In such cases, the person would be required to take steps to inform the owner, or keep a record of its location and inform the relevant local authority of the nature of what they have found and its location.

The associated section 79 (Records of location of apparatus) of the Act was brought into force in 2003. This section provides that those with apparatus under the street must maintain records of that apparatus, and provide it to those requesting it with a legitimate interest.

Some years ago, the industry considered how the requirements in section 80 might operate in practice if they were brought into force. I am aware that at the time, those undertaking street works felt that there would be challenges in identifying the asset owner and conveying the information in a way that would provide an accurate and reliable record for the future. This process could delay completion of the works, causing additional congestion to traffic and adding cost to the job. These consequences conflict with the aims of minimising disruption and cost in carrying out street works. The range of methods used to maintain records, and inconsistency in how the information could be conveyed raised concerns about the feasibility of doing this, and future liability issues.

No further consideration has been given to this matter recently.

 


 

Department for Transport: Public Spending

Drew Hendry (Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department plans to introduce or increase any revenue raising streams to complement the departmental spending reductions agreed with HM Treasury.

Mr Robert Goodwill: The Government will provide full details of the Spending Review outcome on 25 November.

Drew Hendry (Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what effect the spending reductions agreed between his Department and HM Treasury will have on investment in (a) road, (b) rail, (c) air, (d) ports and ferry services, (e) active and sustainable travel and (f) freight facilities.

Mr Robert Goodwill: The Government will provide full details of the Spending Review outcome on 25 November.


Level Crossings

Mr Gary Streeter (West Devon): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans he and Network Rail have to remove level crossings on the mainline between Plymouth and Reading.

Claire Perry: Network Rail operates at arm’s-length from the Department for Transport and is not expected to involve Ministers in its regular operational decisions such as its proposals for the removal or upgrading of level crossings on a particular route.


 

Bus Services: Rural Areas

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what proportion of households in rural areas meet the minimum criteria for the bus availability indicator.

Andrew Jones: The proportion of households by time taken to walk to the nearest bus stop and rural and urban classification is published in table NTS0801, available at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/457740/nts0801.xls

The latest statistics show that in 2014, 85% of households in the most rural areas in England were within 13 minutes’ walk of the nearest bus stop. This proportion increased to 99% of households in England as a whole. These statistics do not take account of the service frequency at the nearest bus stop.

 


 

Roads: Accidents

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent estimate he has made of the proportion of people who (a) died and (b) were injured on the road who were vulnerable road users.

Andrew Jones: (a) In 2014, 51 per cent of people killed in reported personal injury road accidents were vulnerable road users – pedestrians, pedal cyclists, motorcyclists and horse riders (899 of 1,775).

(b) In 2014, 34 per cent of people injured (serious or slight) in reported personal injury road accidents were vulnerable road users (65,606 of 192,702).

 


 

23rd November

Roads: Accidents

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many children have died in road accidents since 2010-11; and if he will estimate what proportion of those children were from households in the lowest income decile.

Andrew Jones: The table below gives the number of children (aged 0-15) killed in reported personal-injury road accidents in Great Britain for 2010 to 2014.

The Department does not collect any information on the household income of road causalities.

Table: Child (aged 0-15) fatalities in reported personal injury road accidents: GB, 2010-2014

2005-2009 average 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Child deaths, England 107 47 47 55 38 46
Child deaths, Wales and Scotland 8 13 6 10 7
Total Child deaths, GB 55 60 61 48 53

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans he has to improve access to buses for blind and partially-sighted people.

Andrew Jones: I understand how important affordable and accessible bus services are too many visually impaired people, and Government continues to support initiatives to improve access.

By January 2017 all local and scheduled buses designed to carry more than twenty-two passengers must comply with the Passenger Service Vehicle Accessibility Regulations 2000 (PSVAR), which include the provision of low floor boarding facilities, colour-contrasting step edges and handholds, and priority seating. We also encourage the bus industry to increase the uptake of audio-visual systems, and have supported projects to design innovative and low-cost approaches to providing accessible on-board information.

Further, Government remains committed to maintaining the national concession , which provides almost a million disabled people with free off-peak bus travel throughout England, helping them to remain mobile without worrying about the cost of doing so.


 Railways: Deaths

Lord Greaves: To ask Her Majesty’s Government how many persons other than those working on the railway have been killed on (1) the UK railways, and (2) the London Underground, in each of the last 10 years, and in the current year so far; and how many of those were (a) suicides, (b) accidents to persons trespassing on the line, (c) accidents at level crossings, and (d) owing to other causes.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: Other than those working on the railway, the number of fatalities on UK Railways over the past decade and to date this year is noted in Table 1 below.

Table 1: Fatalities on UK Railways

2005/06 2006/07 2007/08 2008/09 2009/10 2010/11 2011/12 2012/13 2013/14 2014/15 2015/16*
Suicide 225 225 207 219 243 208 250 246 278 292 142
Trespass 44 43 52 46 42 24 40 33 22 22 15
Level Crossings 13 10 10 12 13 6 4 9 8 11 0
Other 8 11 6 6 6 9 8 4 4 4 4
Totals 290 289 275 283 304 247 302 292 312 329 161

*April – September

The Department for Transport does not hold any information in relation to fatalities on London Underground.


 

Cycling and Walking

Baroness Randerson: To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they still intend to publish their Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy in summer 2016.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: The Department for Transport is in the early stages of developing its first Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy (CWIS) with the intention to publish by summer 2016 following a public consultation on the draft in spring 2016.


 

Bus Drivers: Disability

Baroness Randerson: To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they plan to introduce mandatory training on disability awareness for bus drivers, and if so, when.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: We do not plan to mandate disability awareness training for bus drivers at this time. Disability Awareness Training remains available to all drivers as part of the periodic Certificate of Professional Competence training syllabus and the industry has reported that virtually all drivers have now undertaken the training.


 

25th November

Cycling and Walking

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 17 November 2015 to Question 15352, on Cycling and Walking, which stakeholder groups his Department has engaged with since July 2015.

Mr Robert Goodwill: Since July 2015, my Department has been engaging with a range of stakeholders and most notably with members of its former High level Group of Cycling and Walking Stakeholders, to develop the various elements that will form part of the first Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy. The High Level Group consists of representatives from, British Cycling, Living Streets, Bicycle Association, Sustrans, CTC – the National Cycling Charity, the AA, Transport for London and Transport for Greater Manchester.


 

Children: Walking

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what progress he has made on achieving the target of 55 per cent of primary school children walking to school by 2025.

Mr Robert Goodwill: The Government is developing new ambitions for walking as part of its legal obligation, as set out in the Infrastructure Act 2015, to have in place a Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy (CWIS). The target for walking set out in the Cycling Delivery Plan, to increase the percentage of primary school children walking to school to 55 per cent by 2025, will be considered as part of that process.

My Department intends to publish the first CWIS in summer 2016 and will be announcing a series of supporting documents leading up to this, including an Ambition document.


 

Roads: Repairs and Maintenance

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 10 November 2015 to Question 14816, how much funding was allocated to local authorities for road resurfacing in 2014-15.

Andrew Jones: For 2014/15, the Department for Transport allocated £1.133 billion of funding to local authorities in England for highways maintenance, comprising maintenance block funding, block funding top-up and the pothole repair fund, plus the winter weather repair fund which was allocated in March 2014 but where most of the money would have been spent in 2014/15. This sum represents record funding over the two Parliaments from 2005/06 to 2014/15 for local roads maintenance. (Note that in the figure above London is not allocated maintenance block funding). It is for local authorities to determine how this money is spent, according to local priorities. This includes road resurfacing, as well as other work on the highways network, which includes roads, street lighting and bridges.

 


 

Aviation: Security

Dr Matthew Offord (Hendon): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what variations his Department allows between security measures applied at airports.

Mr Robert Goodwill: All airports in the UK are, as a minimum, required to meet the statutory security requirements set out in the UK National Aviation Security Programme (NASP). This comprises of EU requirements and some UK specific more stringent measures. The airports are responsible for the implementation of the requirements. Security at the airports is multi-layered and may include a number of different screening procedures and equipment in order to deliver the required security standards. It is also open to airports to have in place security measures additional to those required by regulation.

For obvious reasons it would not be appropriate to provide details on the specific security measures being applied. We do however keep aviation security measures under constant review.

 

Dr Matthew Offord (Hendon): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what guidance his Department has published on the use of plastic bags to contain liquids as passengers pass through aviation security.

Mr Robert Goodwill: The Department for Transport has published guidance for passengers and industry on the GOV.UK website on the use of plastic bags to carry liquids through UK airport security. This includes advice on the nature of the plastic bag required. Many UK airports also provide guidance on their websites.

The Civil Aviation Authority provides advice and guidance for airports on the definition of a liquid. The main regulation covering liquids, aerosols and gels, EU Regulation 185/2010 also sets out the rules and requirements.

Grouped Questions: 16717 | 16718


 

26th November

Road Signs and markings: Speed limits

Sir Greg Knight (East Yorkshire): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he is taking to encourage local authorities to make greater use of flexible speed limits with electronic signs.

Andrew Jones: Average speed limits do not exist but Highways England uses variable speed limits on smart motorways to smooth traffic flow, reduce congestion and enhance safety. The variable limits are set locally in response to traffic flow levels or to help manage incidents.

The Department issued revised guidance in January 2013 aimed mainly at local traffic authorities who are responsible for setting speed limits on local roads. It includes guidance on the use of variable 20 mph speed limits with electronic signs. It has been designed to help explain to everyone why and how local speed limits are determined. This guidance was revised following full public consultation in summer 2012 and is available online on GOV.UK

Grouped Questions: 17012


 

Speed Limits: Cameras

Lord Berkeley: To ask Her Majesty’s Government why they decided that all grey speed cameras should be painted yellow, and what safety benefits they expect to result from that change.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: The Government has always been clear that speed cameras are for smoothing traffic flow, reducing congestion and enhancing safety rather than for revenue raising. All working grey speed cameras are being painted yellow within a year to make them more visible, so that motorists know the cameras are there.

The purpose of this particular type of camera is to enforce variable speed limits on smart motorways which smooth traffic flow and help reduce congestion. The safety outcome of this change in colour will be monitored by Highways England.


 

Road Traffic

Sir Greg Knight (East Yorkshire): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he plans to take to ensure that local highway agencies always give motorists sufficient and early notification of traffic delays, congestion and road accidents so that motorists approaching a black spot can use an alternative route; and if he will make a statement.

Andrew Jones: Local authorities are responsible for managing their roads and are required through the Network Management Duty contained in the Traffic Management Act 2004 to do so in a way that provides safe, convenient and expeditious movement of traffic.

Providing timely and relevant information to road users is an important part of this, and it is for local authorities to decide how to ensure they provide this. They have a range of measures available to them, including CCTV to monitor the road network and identify incidents, variable message signs to show messages indicating road closures and diversions, and information provided through their website and to local radio stations.

 


 

Pedestrian Crossings

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what proportion of road crossings in England are (a) puffin and (b) pedex crossings

Andrew Jones: The Department for Transport does not hold information on numbers or types of pedestrian crossings installed by local authorities.

Provision of pedestrian crossings is the responsibility of local traffic authorities, who are not required to inform the Department when installing crossings. This includes decisions on location and type of crossing, which will take into account local factors such as road layout, traffic speed and volume, and pedestrian flow.

The Department gives advice on assessing and designing pedestrian crossings in two Local Transport Notes (LTNs), LTN 1/95: The Assessment of Pedestrian Crossings and LTN 2/95: The Design of Pedestrian Crossings. These are available to download from:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/local-transport-notes.

 


 

Roads: Standards

Daniel Zeichner (Cambridge): To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many miles of local authority road are in a poor structural condition in (a) England outside London and (b) London.

Andrew Jones: The Department for Transport does not hold information on how many miles of local authority roads are in a poor structural condition in England or London.


30th December

Roads: Accidents

Lord Black of Brentwood: To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they plan to amend road traffic legislation to make it compulsory for drivers who run over a cat to report it to the police.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: The Government has no plans to amend the legislation.

The Highway Code advises drivers to report any accident involving an animal to the police, which I hope would lead to domestic animal owners whose animals are killed in road accidents being made aware of their loss.

The police also advise drivers that, if possible, they should make enquiries to ascertain the owner of domestic animals, such as cats, and advise them of the situation.


Further details available on the  Parliamentary Hansard.

 

 

 

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