PQs 12th – 15th March

Cycling: Training
 
Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much funding her Department will allocate for cycling training in (a) each year of the current spending review period and (b) the following spending period. [99447]
Norman Baker: The Department for Transport has made £11 million per financial year available to local highway authorities and school games organiser host schools to deliver Bikeability cycle training to children aged between 9 to 14 years. This funding covers the period between 1 April 2011 and 31 March 2015. Funding beyond March 2015 will be reviewed nearer the time.
Cycling: Safety
 
Mrs Moon: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment she has made of the merits of introducing a one metre rule for motorists overtaking cyclists; and if she will make a statement. [99043]
 
Norman Baker: All drivers have a duty of care and consideration to other road users. Rules 163 and 211 to 213 of the Highway Code advise drivers to give cyclists at least as much room as a car when overtaking, and to give them plenty of room and pay attention to any sudden change they may have to make.
Although failure to comply with this advice will not, in itself, cause a person to be prosecuted, the Highway Code may be used in evidence in any court proceedings under the Traffic Acts to establish liability. This includes rules which use advisory wording such as ‘should/should not’ or ‘do/do not’.
To make a law that suggest any space less than one metre is illegal when overtaking cyclists would be difficult to enforce.
Driving under Influence: Rehabilitation
 
Paul Blomfield: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to the answer of 20 February 2012, Official Report, column 568W, on driving under influence: rehabilitation, if she will list all the meetings that her Department has had with AA Drivetech where drink drive rehabilitation was (a) a scheduled agenda item and (b) was not scheduled as an agenda item but arose during the course of the meeting. [99755]
 
Mike Penning: Driving Standards Agency officials have met with AA Drivetech only once, on 17 January 2011. The drink drive rehabilitation scheme was a scheduled agenda item.
Aviation: Working Hours
 
Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what her policy is on proposals made by the European Aviation Safety Agency concerning flight time limitations for the flight crew of commercial aircraft. [99819]
Mrs Villiers: The European Aviation Safety Agency is currently consulting on draft implementing rules establishing flight time limitations for the crew of commercial aircraft. The Civil Aviation Authority will be responding to the consultation. We will consider our position once a final set of rules has been proposed.
Civil Aviation Authority
 
Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport on how many occasions the Civil Aviation Authority has (a) issued warnings to and (b) made findings against (i) pilots and (ii) flight crew in respect of breaches of the annual limit for duty hours for commercial aviation in the last year for which figures are available. [99818]
 
Mrs Villiers: In 2011 the Civil Aviation Authority did not issue any warnings or make any findings in respect of flight crew exceeding the annual limit on duty hours.
Driving Tests: Motorcycles
 
Mr Holloway: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent progress she has made on implementing the third European driving licence directive motorcycle test; how each major feature of the test will improve safety; and if she will make a statement. [100152]
 
Mike Penning: Implementation of the third European driving licence directive will not affect the form or content of the motorcycling test. It contains new provisions which will affect how motorcyclists progress to ride larger and more powerful machines. The most significant changes are:
a new medium-sized motorcycling licence category (A2) to be introduced for riders aged 19 or over.
a new common category (AM) across Europe for mopeds, which will replace the current domestic category P licence. The practical test for mopeds will also remain unchanged.
an increase in the minimum age for motorcyclists gaining direct access to the most powerful motorbikes from 21 years to 24 years.
new arrangements for younger motorcyclists wishing to progress in stages to ride larger and more powerful machines (currently, unlimited access to all motorcycles is gained automatically after two years’ experience on less powerful machines).
We anticipate that the implementing legislation will shortly be laid before Parliament. We are on track to meet our obligations for full implementation by January 2013.
Lorries: EU Law
 
Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps her Department has taken to ensure that foreign-registered haulage vehicles on British roads comply with the requirements of EU legislation. [99929]
 
Mike Penning: The Vehicle and Operator Services Agency carries out checks at the roadside of foreign-registered haulage vehicles and takes action when they are found to be non-compliant with drivers’ hours and tachograph, international operator licensing and vehicle roadworthiness requirements. They also check for overloading. VOSA has a number of powers that it can use as part of that enforcement—including the power to prohibit vehicles from continuing their journeys until defects of drivers’ hours offences are rectified, taking a deposit from drivers (in effect an on the spot fine), prosecution and, in limited cases, directing a vehicle out of the country. For serious offences these are reported to the home member state, so that action can be taken on the operator’s licence.
Public Transport: Safety
 
Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps her Department has taken to improve passenger safety on public transport since 2010. [99930]
Norman Baker: The Department for Transport is committed to improving the personal security of passengers on public transport, working closely with the police and transport operators to manage security risks to the transport networks.
Much of the work to ensure that passengers can travel safely is undertaken by the transport industry, local authorities, the police and others, who are investing in a wide range of initiatives to keep our public transport system as a low crime environment. Initiatives include the Secure Stations scheme, which has seen over 1,250 train stations accredited, investment in a bus fleet that now has 69% of vehicles equipped with CCTV and Network Rail’s safety campaign, which educates young people about the dangers of misusing the railway.
I also instigated a Public Transport Crime Liaison Group, a unique forum that provides an opportunity to work with transport operators and others to address passenger safety and crime across the public transport network. The most recent meeting took place last month.
Roads: Accidents
 
Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many roads were closed due to road traffic accidents in each local authority area in the north-west in each of the last three years; and for how long roads were closed in each case. [100085]
Mike Penning: The information requested is not collected by the Department.
 
Paul Blomfield: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what proportion of road accidents resulting in a (a) serious injury and (b) fatality involved people driving for business purposes in each of the last four quarters. [100190]
 
Mike Penning: The proportion of personal injury road accidents, where the journey purpose was known and recorded as “part of work” which resulted in (a) serious injury and (b) fatality, for each quarter of 2010 in Great Britain is given in the following table:
 
Proportion of accidents (percentage)
Q1 2010 Q2 2010 Q3 2010 Q4 2010 Total

(a) Serious injury

25

22

23

25

24

(b) Fatality

34

          27

          27

          32

30

 

Roads: Speed Limits
 
Question
Asked by Lord Bradshaw
To ask Her Majesty’s Government when they propose to introduce the enforcement of 20 miles per hour speed limits; and what actions they are taking to assist police with enforcement.[HL16112]
Earl Attlee: Enforcement is a matter for the police. We are also currently reviewing our guidance on speed limits and we will shortly be liaising with the Association of Chief Police Officers about this precise matter.
Roads: Traffic Regulations
 
Question
Asked by Lord Roberts of Llandudno
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what action they are taking to enable foreign drivers, especially from countries that have recently joined the European Union, to be aware of United Kingdom traffic regulations and to understand road signs across the United Kingdom.[HL16222]
 
Earl Attlee: Before driving in the United Kingdom, the onus is on individual drivers to familiarise themselves with the rules of the Highway Codes for Great Britain and Northern Ireland, which explain traffic regulations and the most commonly placed traffic signs. The codes apply to all road users, irrespective of their nationality.
Vehicles: Semi-trailers
 
Question
Asked by Lord Stoddart of Swindon
To ask Her Majesty’s Government why the conditions attached to the trial of longer semi-trailers do not restrict their access to urban areas.[HL16240]
 
Earl Attlee: The longer semi-trailers operating under the trial are within the maximum permitted length for heavy goods vehicles of 18.75 metres, do not exceed the permitted gross vehicle weight of 44 tonnes, and comply with current technical requirements applicable to heavy goods vehicles, including turning circles. They are therefore treated on a par with any other heavy goods vehicle meeting the maximum permitted weight and length.
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