Written Answers 1 to 5 March 2010

Monday 1 March 2010

Hackney
Ms Abbott: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport if he will set out, with statistical evidence relating as closely as possible to Hackney North and Stoke Newington constituency, the effects on that constituency of his Department’s policies since 1997. [318375]

Mr. Khan: The Department for Transport (DFT) does not routinely hold transport statistics on a parliamentary constituency basis. The Department provides Transport for London (TfL) with a block grant to fund transport delivery in London. This grant has more than doubled in the last nine years, rising to almost £3 billion in 2009-10. Drawing on these and other resources, the Mayor is responsible for publishing and, through TfL, implementing a transport strategy for London, while the boroughs are required to publish local implementation plans which set out how they will contribute to the Mayor’s strategy.

The additional funding that has been made available has helped deliver 1,089 million passenger journeys on the tube in 2008-9, the highest ever. London Underground’s scheduled service is now its largest ever, and in 2008-09 96.4 per cent. was run, the best annual result for 14 years.

Bus services in London have also improved. 2,247 million passenger journeys were made in 2008-09 and patronage grew by almost 47 per cent. between 1997-98 and 2007-08.

Rail routes serving Hackney North and Stoke Newington have also improved. Served by National Express East Anglia, this franchise has seen punctuality increase from 85 per cent. to 91 per cent. since 2004, over 450 carriages have been refurbished and many stations have been upgraded.

On the roads, national targets to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured by 40 per cent. and reduce the number of “slight” casualties by 10 per cent. (compared to the period 1994-98) by 2010 were largely exceeded by TfL by 2004, leading to TfL setting themselves new targets of 50 per cent. and 25 per cent. respectively.

There have also been improvements to cycling across London. In May 2010 TfL will launch its cycle hire scheme and construction of the cycle superhighways is now under way; one route will run from Tottenham to the City through Hackney. TfL report that cycling now accounts for 2 per cent. of trips in London compared to 1.2 per cent. in 2000, and between 2000-01 and 2007-08 TfL’s automatic cycle counters reported an increase in cyclists of 91 per cent.

Motor Vehicles: Lighting
Mrs. Ellman: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what research (a) his Department and (b) its agencies have undertaken on the effectiveness of (i) halogen and (ii) bi-xenon headlights. [318636]

Paul Clark: The Department for Transport has commissioned two studies related to the effectiveness of halogen and bi-xenon headlights.

TRL carried out a review of existing research on gas discharge (i.e. bi-xenon) headlights in 1994 to assist in the development of European regulations on the subject.

In 2000, ICE ergonomics at Loughborough University studied headlight glare and driver vision to help establish a basis against which future headlamp performance requirements might be assessed.

British Transport Police
Questions asked by Lord Bradshaw

To ask Her Majesty’s Government when is the next quinquennial review of the activities of the British Transport Police. [HL2326]

To ask Her Majesty’s Government who will set the remit for the quinquennial review of the activities of the British Transport Police; and whether views from the public will be sought. [HL2327]

Asked by Lord Bradshaw

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether the discussions about policing of transport interchanges during the passage of the Policing and Crime Act 2009 will be taken into account in the quinquennial review of the activities of the British Transport Police. [HL2328]

The Secretary of State for Transport (Lord Adonis): A review of the British Transport Police Authority is due to take place this year. In accordance with Cabinet Office guidelines, its remit will be set by the Department for Transport and I expect one of the areas for consideration to be the possibility of extending the jurisdiction of the British Transport Police.

Those carrying out the review will want to take account of the views expressed on the subject during the passage of the Policing and Crime Bill and the undertakings given by the Government at the time. The arguments for extending the British Transport Police’s remit are well known and I would expect those with a direct interest to be given the opportunity to comment further before any significant changes were made.

Tuesday 2 March 2010

A12: Safety
Mr. Burns: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what plans he has to (a) upgrade, (b) improve safety and (c) relieve congestion on the A12 between its junction with the M25 and Witham; and if he will make a statement. [319082]

Chris Mole: Following the then Secretary of State for Transport’s announcement in November 2008 that the Department for Transport would invest up to £60 million in introducing new traffic management measures to improve safety, reduce delays and tackle congestion along 54 miles of the A12, the Highways Agency have begun to implement a programme of schemes to do this.

The Department for Transport has recently commissioned consultants to undertake the London to Haven ports national networks study. This is to understand and identify measures to address the issues on the strategic routes between London and the Haven Ports, including the A12.

Driving Under Influence: Accidents
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport how many and what proportion of road deaths in each local authority area involved at least one driver with a blood alcohol level in excess of the legal limit in each of the last five years for which figures are available. [320048]

Paul Clark: The information requested is not available by local authority area.

However, further information about alcohol-related accidents can be found in the Drink drive articles, in ‘Reported Road Casualties Great Britain’, at:

http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/statistics/datatablespublications/accidents/casualtiesgbar/

Wednesday 3 March 2010

Driving Offences: Local Government
Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport how many cases heard by the Traffic Penalty Tribunal were brought by local authorities in respect of their own vehicles in the last 36 months. [319803]

Mr. Khan: This information is not held by central Government.

Driving under Influence: Crime Prevention
Stewart Hosie: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what steps his Department is taking to reduce the number of instances of drink driving. [319753]

Paul Clark: There is stringent legislation around drink driving, with a minimum of 12 month ban for drivers found over the prescribed alcohol limit for driving. We have worked closely with the police on enforcement, such as equipping police forces with new digital breathalysers, and in making the links between police campaigns and our drink-drive advertising. This long-term strategy has helped deliver more than a 75 per cent. reduction in drink-drive related deaths and serious injuries since 1980.

The Government consulted last year on a number of further measures to reduce drink-related casualties in the Road Safety Compliance document, the results of which will feed into the Government’s post-2010 Road Safety Strategy to be published later this year.

The Department for Transport also announced in December that it had commissioned an independent review of drink and drug driving legislation. As far as drink driving is concerned, the review, led by Sir Peter North, is examining the case for changes to the current provisions, including options for reducing the legal alcohol limit for drivers. The study is also considering the likely impact of such changes on driver behaviour. Sir Peter has been asked to report by the end of March and the Government will then consult on his findings before finalising and publishing the new road safety strategy.

Copies of the Road Safety Compliance consultation document and the terms of reference for the North review have been placed in the Libraries of the House.

In addition to these steps, the Department for Transport is developing a new multi-media publicity campaign targeting drivers who continue to mix drinking and driving. We are aiming to launch the campaign in summer 2010.

Driving: Licensing
Mr. Crabb: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport if he will make it his policy to collect information on the country of issue of driving licences held by drivers involved in traffic accidents. [319161]

Paul Clark: The collection of information about driving licences held by drivers involved in traffic accidents was considered as part of the latest review of personal injury road casualties statistics collected by the police on behalf of the Department. The review has to consider user needs against the additional burden and practicality of collection. A copy of the summary review report, published on 4 February 2010, has been placed in the House Library.

The review proposed a new variable to identify whether a driver has a valid licence. No further details of the licence, including country of issue, will be collected as part of the statistics form. The introduction of a new electronic collision reporting system for the police from 2011 may enable further information on driving licences held by drivers involved in traffic accidents to be obtained in the future.

Roads: Accidents
Mr. Syms: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport whether he has made an estimate of the number of (a) pedestrians and (b) cyclists injured in road traffic accidents in which the use of a personal music device was a contributory factor in the last five years. [320378]

Paul Clark: The information requested is not collected by the Department for Transport.

Mr. Amess: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport how many road traffic accidents were recorded in (a) Essex and (b) Southend in each year since 1997. [320645]

Paul Clark: The information requested is given in the following table.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmhansrd/cm100303/text/100303w0002.htm

Thursday 4 March 2010

Driving Offences
Mark Hunter: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the average (a) fine and (b) length of sentence for an offence of dangerous driving was in each of the last 10 years. [320161]

Claire Ward: The requested information is provided in the following table:

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmhansrd/cm100304/text/100304w0008.htm#10030461000012

Driving Tests: Motorcycles
Mark Williams: To ask the Minister of State, Transport what casual sites for motorcycle testing have been brought into use since April 2009; and what the cost was of making each such site suitable for motorcycle testing. [320266]

Paul Clark: No casual sites have been brought into use since April 2009. There were 16 Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) and six casual sites available to use when the new motorcycling test was implemented on 27 April 2009. Of these sites, 13 VOSA and four casual sites remain operational with five now having been replaced by permanent multi-purpose test centres (MPTCs).

Other VOSA and casual sites will be replaced as permanent MPTCs become operational locally.

The total cost of preparing and maintaining the VOSA and casual sites for use for module one motorcycle testing is forecast to be £2.5 million.

Driving: Licensing
Chris Huhne: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport how many people (a) over and (b) under retirement age in each police force area have had their driving licence withdrawn in each of the last five years. [320130]

Paul Clark: The information requested is not readily available and would incur disproportionate costs to gather. However, the following table provides the number of people (a) over and (b) at or below 65, whose driving licence has been withdrawn for the reasons quoted.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmhansrd/cm100304/text/100304w0012.htm#10030475000001

Motorways: Accidents
Norman Baker: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport how many accidents have taken place between motorway junctions where there is hard shoulder running in each of the last five years. [319048]

Chris Mole: Hard shoulder running was introduced on the M42 between J3A and J7 on 12 September 2006 and normally operates at peak travel times or when there is an incident.

The accident data for the M42 J3a to 7 cover all personal injury accidents for the period to the end of 2008 and are as follows:

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmhansrd/cm100304/text/100304w0013.htm

Motorways: Road Traffic
Norman Baker: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of hard shoulder running in the latest period for which figures are available. [319049]

Chris Mole: The estimated cost to the Highways Agency of hard shoulder running between Junctions 3a and 7 on the M42 is associated with the following four main areas of additional activity and cost.

Additional advanced motorway indicators over the hard shoulder-estimated cost of annual maintenance is £25,000.

Fixed CCTV cameras to monitor the hard shoulder-estimated costs of annual maintenance is £80,000.

Control room staff to open, close and monitor use of hard shoulder running-estimated annual cost is £38,000.

Additional traffic officer patrols to undertake pre-opening inspections of the hard shoulder and manage incidents-estimated annual cost of staff and vehicles is £66,000.

There are several additional areas for which it is not possible to disaggregate costs including power, sweeping and salting of the emergency refuge areas. These costs are considered to be negligible.

Motorways: Standards
Norman Baker: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what the average delay in minutes has been between motorway junctions where there is hard shoulder running in each of the last five years. [319047]

Chris Mole: Hard shoulder running was introduced on the M42 between Junction 3A and Junction 7 on 12 September 2006 and normally operates at peak travel times or when there is an incident.

In measuring delay the Highways Agency defines a free flow theoretical reference speed. For the M42, this is approximately 66 mph. Delay is measured as the actual measured speed of traffic compared to this reference speed and is quoted as the delay per 10 vehicle kms.

The following table shows the results for the M42 Junctions 3A to 7 for the last five years.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmhansrd/cm100304/text/100304w0013.htm

 

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