PQs 4th – 5th April

Motor Vehicles: Insurance
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) if he will conduct a promotional campaign aimed at young drivers to make them aware of the requirement to hold valid motor insurance; and if he will make a statement; (2) what his policy is on the introduction of continuous insurance enforcement for motor vehicles; and if he will make a statement. [50688]
Mike Penning: The Continuous Insurance Enforcement scheme, that will mean that the registered keeper of a motor vehicle must keep it insured at all times unless they have made a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN), is planned to start in late spring.
This will follow a full publicity campaign to raise awareness of the scheme with motorists. The Department for Transport continues to work closely with the insurance industry on communications activity and the message has been promoted through the media, in information mailed out by Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency with vehicle tax reminders and on:
www.direct.gov.uk/stayinsured
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent representations he has received on the scale of risks to young drivers seeking motor insurance; and if he will initiate a consultation on policy options to address the cost of motor insurance for young drivers. [50689]
Mike Penning: I recognise that the rising cost of motor insurance is a problem to young people. The higher premiums faced by young drivers reflect the cost to insurers of providing cover but the Government are concerned that it may tempt some to drive uninsured. The issue has been raised in correspondence to the Department and at the recent Transport Select Committee on the cost of motor insurance.
I wish to work with the motor insurance industry to identify ways in which we can develop insurance products which offer incentives to those young drivers who may be willing to accept restrictions or take additional training. A seminar to look at the issues is planned for May. There are no current plans for formal consultation.
 
Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee
Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he plans to publish the equality impact assessment in respect of the abolition of the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee. [49835]
Norman Baker: The Department for Transport’s proposals have been through a preliminary impact assessment process, including an equalities impact assessment. Full impact assessment documents will be published as part of the consultation process in the coming months.
 
Driving Tests: Motorcycles
Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) which organisations have been consulted by his Department’s review group assessing the feasibility and safety of proposed changes to the motorcycle test; [50822]
(2) what discussions he has had with the (a) Association of Chief Police Officers and (b) Association of Chief Police Officers Scotland on proposals for alterations to the motorcycle test; [50829]
(3) who the members are of his Department’s review group to assess the feasibility and safety of the changes proposed for the motorcycle test; [50830]
(4) when his Department’s review group assessing the feasibility and safety of the proposals to change the motorcycle test will report. [50893]
Mike Penning: A public consultation was held on the scope of the review in June/July 2010. There were 489 responses, mainly from motorcyclists (including learners and experienced), motorcycle trainers and examiners. There will be a further consultation on proposed changes to the motorcycle test in due course.
There have so far been no formal discussions with the Association of Chief Police Officers or the Association of Chief Police Officers Scotland. There have been informal discussions with the DfT/ACPO liaison officer.
There is a working group and a technical sub-group assessing the feasibility and safety of the changes proposed for the motorcycle test.
Members of the working group are:
Department for Transport
Driving Standards Agency
Motorcycle Industry Association
Motorcycle Industry Trainers Association
Motorcycle Action Group
British Motorcyclists Federation
Public and Commercial Services Union
Road Safety Great Britain
Royal Society for Prevention of Accidents
The Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety was also involved in the initial stages of the review.
Members of the technical sub group are:
Department for Transport
Driving Standards Agency
Motorcycle Industry Association
Motorcycle Industry Trainers Association
Motorcycle Action Group
Public and Commercial Services Union
Biketrain Wales
CamRider
Streetwise Training
Fast-Trak Training was also involved in the initial stages of the review.
An interim report from the working group was published on the DfT website on 20 December 2010. There will be a further report later this year.
Legislation
Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what plans he has to bring into force sections of primary legislation within his Department’s area of responsibility which are not currently in force. [50452]
Norman Baker [holding answer 1 April 2011]: Active consideration is being given to commencing the following provisions (to the extent they are not already commenced):
(a) section 35 of the Road Safety Act 2006 (which relates to a reduced disqualification period for attendance on a course);
(b) sections 2, 4 and 5 of the Local Transport Act 2008 (which relate to traffic commissioner areas);
(c) the Driving Instruction (Suspension and Exemption Powers) Act 2009;and
(d) sections 161, 165 and 167 of the Equality Act 2010 (which relate to taxis and private hire vehicles).
 
Network Rail
Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what plans he has for the restructuring of Network Rail in 2011. [49831]
Mrs Villiers: Sir Roy McNulty’s Rail Value for Money study will present its final conclusions shortly. Sir Roy’s recommendations and the industry’s response to them will shape the Government’s proposals for the reform of the industry, which we intend to set out later this year.
Railways: Disability
Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will assess the adequacy of the assistance available for disabled passengers to board trains at unstaffed train stations. [48267]
Mrs Villiers [holding answer 24 March 2011]: Provision of assistance for disabled passengers is an operational matter for train operating companies (TOC). TOCs must commit to provide assistance at any station during scheduled train operating times or to provide an accessible service to take disabled passengers to the nearest or most convenient accessible station from where they can continue their journey. No additional charge should be levied for this facility.
Each TOC’s Disabled Persons Protection Policy is reviewed annually.
The Department for Transport is working with the industry in implementing an upgrade to the current Assisted Passenger Reservation Service, which we expect to be launched this summer.
Roads: Accidents
Mr Syms: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many road casualties were recorded in (a) Poole constituency and (b) the south-west in the last three years for which figures are available. [50518]
Mike Penning: The information requested is given in the following table:

Reported casualties from personal injury road accidents in (a) Poole constituency and (b) the south – west ,2007-09
Number of casualties

(a) Poole( 1) (b) South- west region( 2)

2007

362

21,866

2008

371

19,184

2009

323

18,117

(1) Based on the 2010 parliamentary boundaries.
(2) Former Government Office Region.
The data for year 2010 will be published at end of June 2011.
Nick Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many pedestrians were (a) injured and (b) killed in road traffic accidents in Oxford street, London, in each of the last five years. [51042]
Mike Penning: The information requested is given in the following table:

Reported pedestrian casualties resulting from personal injury road accidents: Oxford s treet, London, 2005-09
Number of casualties
Accident year (a) All injury severities (b) Killed

2005

111

0

2006

93

2

2007

73

1

2008

64

1

2009

63

3

Source:
Transport for London
Speed Limits: Cameras
Mr Syms: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what revenue was collected through speed camera penalty charge notices in (a) Poole constituency and (b) the south-west in the last three years for which figures are available. [50519]
Mike Penning: Following the ending of the National Safety Camera Funding Scheme in 2007, all fixed penalty income, whether or not the offence was detected by camera, goes to the Consolidated Fund.
Data on the number of fixed penalties issued and paid per year for all motoring offences and separately on all speeding offences detected by camera are collected centrally and published as part of National Statistics. These are outlined in detail within Chapter 3 of the Home Office Statistical Bulletin, “Police Powers and Procedures”. Sections 3.3 and 3.4 deal with fixed penalty notices generally and notices issued on the basis of speed camera evidence respectively. Data available for police force areas include in table 3.01 “Speed Limit Offences” which will include all detected offences, including those detected by enforcement cameras.
The latest publication outlines data for the financial year 2008-09 as well as making reference to historical data. The next bulletin is due to be published in April 2011:
http://rds.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/stats-release.html
Transport: Schools
Mr Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what progress has been made towards a review of school travel. [48864]
Mr Gibb: I have been asked to reply.
One of the coalition Government’s priorities is to increase the supply of places in good schools and, in doing so, increase parental choice. Transport is a vital element in extending parental choice. Local authorities already spend almost £1 billion per annum on school transport. The Secretary of State has very recently allocated a further £85 million over the next two financial years to local authorities to support low income families attend schools further from home than the statutory distance. Part of that allocation is to help those families attend schools on the basis of a particular religion or belief. This has been communicated to local authorities and individual allocations will be made to local authorities very shortly.
Officials will also launch a review involving local authorities on how we can improve the efficiency and practice within local authority transport planning in the coming years.
 
Transport: Sustainable Development
Mrs Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what consultation his Department undertook with representatives of the motorcycling industry when formulating its Local Transport White Paper, Creating Growth, Cutting Carbon: Making Sustainable Local Transport Happen. [50920]
Norman Baker: The Department for Transport did not specifically consult with representatives of the motorcycling industry when formulating its Local Transport White Paper, Creating Growth, Cutting Carbon: Making Sustainable Local Transport Happen, but is aware of its general views and took these into account in the formulation of the paper. The Paper cites, for example, the benefits of the “Wheel to Work” initiative.
The Department recognises that motorcycling is a mode of transport that many people find practical and convenient, and that it has a useful part to play in the full range of transport policies, at national as well as local level. Where a local authority identifies the promotion or facilitation of motorcycle use as part of a solution to the transport problem identified in their area, and this solution can be shown to meet the objectives of the Local Sustainable Transport Fund announced alongside the White Paper, I would be pleased to consider the merits of the proposal alongside other bids.
Cycling
Ian Austin: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether he has made an assessment of the behavioural impact analysis report by the Cycle to Work Alliance on the effects on the cycling industry of the financial incentives provided by the cycle to work scheme; and if he will make a statement. [51145]
Norman Baker: I welcomed the publication of the behavioural impact analysis report by the Cycle to Work Alliance and also provided a supportive foreword. There are no plans to make a further statement or conduct an assessment on the effects on the cycling industry of the financial incentives provided by the cycle to work scheme.
Cycling England
Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what residual functions will remain following the abolition of Cycling England; which organisation will carry out each such function; what the estimated costs of each such function are; and what transfer of funds will be made to each organisation to carry out each such function. [46486]
Norman Baker: Cycling England will cease to exist after 31 March 2011 and promotion of cycling will fall to the Department for Transport and local authorities.
Funding for cycling will be subsumed into the Local Sustainable Transport Fund. £560 million is available over four years for sustainable transport solutions including cycling. Local authorities will also have ring fenced resources for public health, which could include promoting cycling.
A number of national cycling projects will continue to be funded through the Local Sustainable Transport Fund, overseen by Department for Transport.
These are:
Bikeability Cycle Training has been allocated £11 million in 2011-12 and will continue to be supported for the duration of this Parliament. The delivery arrangements for this are currently being considered.
Links to Schools, Bike It and Bike Club have been allocated £12.7 million in 2011-12 via a grant to the Active Travel Consortium. After March 2012 local authorities will be expected to support such projects themselves.
Motor Vehicles: Insurance
Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what steps he has taken to assist police forces and insurers to address motor vehicle insurance fraud; [49798]
(2) what steps he is taking to tackle fraud in the motor insurance industry. [49849]
Mike Penning: The Department for Transport has recently introduced Continuous Insurance Enforcement which is expected to have a significant effect in reducing the use of uninsured vehicles.
We are working with the motor insurance industry to provide industry participants with automated access to a driver’s record so that they can check the driver’s entitlement to drive, endorsements or driving convictions when applying for motor insurance cover. The intention is to prevent drivers providing false or misleading information which may compromise cover and invalidate the policy.
The police already take steps to tackle those who are not validly insured and other fraud. I will also consider with the Home Office a proposal for a dedicated police unit on insurance fraud, paid for by the insurance industry, as proposed in the recent Transport Select Committee’s report on motor insurance.
Parking: Pedestrian Areas
Valerie Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the outcome was of the review of pavement parking conducted in 1988. [46196]
Norman Baker: The review did not lead to any formal conclusions, but it did inform the development of legislation, including the Road Traffic Acts of 1988 and 1991.
I have recently written to all English traffic authorities in England (outside London) to remind them of the powers and tools they already have to tackle local pavement parking problems, and to issue them with the special authorisation necessary for new signs for area-wide bans.
Roads: Safety
Mike Weatherley: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what plans his Department has for road safety campaigns on television in 2011-12; [50656]
(2) what plans his Department has for road safety campaigns in schools in 2011-12; [50657]
(3) whether his Department plans to run road safety campaigns for children in conjunction with the private sector in 2011-12; [50658]
(4) whether his Department has a ring-fenced budget for road safety for children in 2011-12. [50659]
Mike Penning: The Department for Transport is currently developing its communication plans for 2011-12 and future years. The spending review allocated £3.5 million for road safety communications in 2011-12.
Child road safety will remain a priority. Plans for child road safety have yet to be submitted and approved although we expect to include child road safety campaigns in partnership with the private sector. The plan will be subject to the controls on advertising and marketing spend governed by the Efficiency and Reform Group.
The THINK! education materials (covering early years, primary and secondary school children) will remain available for use within schools.
There are no current plans for television road safety campaigns in 2011-12.Roads: Safety
Mike Weatherley: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what plans his Department has for road safety campaigns on television in 2011-12; [50656]
(2) what plans his Department has for road safety campaigns in schools in 2011-12; [50657]
(3) whether his Department plans to run road safety campaigns for children in conjunction with the private sector in 2011-12; [50658]
(4) whether his Department has a ring-fenced budget for road safety for children in 2011-12. [50659]
Mike Penning: The Department for Transport is currently developing its communication plans for 2011-12 and future years. The spending review allocated £3.5 million for road safety communications in 2011-12.
Child road safety will remain a priority. Plans for child road safety have yet to be submitted and approved although we expect to include child road safety campaigns in partnership with the private sector. The plan will be subject to the controls on advertising and marketing spend governed by the Efficiency and Reform Group.
The THINK! education materials (covering early years, primary and secondary school children) will remain available for use within schools.
There are no current plans for television road safety campaigns in 2011-12.
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