Previous Section Index Home Page


Western Orbital Motorway

Mr. Pearson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what plans his Department has to undertake a full environment and economic impact assessment of the proposed western orbital motorway; and if he will make a statement. [583]

Mr. Watts: Economic and environmental appraisal is carried out throughout the life of a scheme. If draft orders were published for the western orbital, the results of the work at that stage would also be published.

Transport Infrastructure Schemes (Greater London)

Ms Glenda Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list those transport infrastructure schemes within the Greater London area to which his Department has contributed funding in excess of £10 million over the past 16 years, the amount of funding provided to each scheme, the start date for each scheme and the completion date for each scheme. [295]

Mr. Norris: This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Details of the Department of Transport's spending since 1989-90 are set out in "Transport Report 1995", presented to Parliament in March 1995.

Pollution

Mr. William O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make it his Department's policy to take account of the prevailing winds when pollution samples are taken along motorways; and if he will make a statement. [1317]

Mr. Norris: Whenever air quality monitoring is undertaken, the possible effect of the prevailing wind is taken into account as part of the measurement.

Mr. O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport at what distance from the edge of a motorway sampling is taken for PM10 and particulates. [1316]

Mr. Norris: Where PM10 and particulates are sampled, there is no fixed distance from the motorway edge applied. The distance is normally set by the requirements of the sampling equipment and the characteristics of the monitoring location.

Mr. O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what reports his Department receives from the Department of the Environment in respect of the monitoring of pollution along motorways. [1318]

Mr. Norris: We receive no such reports. The Department of the Environment does not carry out air quality monitoring adjacent to motorways.

22 Nov 1995 : Column: 148

Mr. O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what are the terms of reference given by his Department when measuring air quality along motorways. [1315]

Mr. Norris: There are no fixed terms of reference for the measurement of air quality alongside motorways.

Each site is assessed on a preliminary basis in accordance with the design manual for roads and bridges volume 11 "Environmental Assessment" and this informs the need for any further specific measurements.

River Thames (Freight)

Ms Glenda Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what has been the volume of freight, in tonnes, carried on the River Thames in each year from 1979 to 1995. [272]

Mr. Norris: The volume of freight, in millions of tonnes, carried on the River Thames in each year from 1980 to 1994 was as follows:

YearInternal trafficSeagoing traffic
19806.1520.49
19815.4018.36
19824.3921.18
19833.7221.13
19843.7819.65
19853.5021.74
19863.1823.30
19873.0020.90
19882.9323.43
19893.1723.25
19902.0024.75
19911.8321.83
19921.8420.89
19931.8720.39
19942.8321.30

Figures not available for 1979.


Fare Capping

Ms Glenda Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what percentage of passenger rail fares will be capped as a result of the Government's fare capping formulae. [282]

Mr. Watts: Across the network, regulation will ensure that there is at least one regulated fare available for every journey. The percentage of passenger revenue subject to fares regulation will vary according to the nature of the franchise. Invitations to tender have been issued in respect of seven passenger rail services--LTS Rail, Great Western, South West Trains, InterCity East Coast, Midland Main Line, Network SouthCentral and Gatwick Express. For those which provide a significant number of commuter services, the percentage of passenger revenue subject to fares regulation, based on 1994-95 figures, is expected to be between approximately 47 per cent., and 80 per cent. For InterCity services, the range is expected to be between approximately 21 per cent. and 25 per cent. These figures do not include Gatwick Express, for which only a very small percentage of passenger revenue will be subject to fares regulation.

22 Nov 1995 : Column: 149

Public Interest Immunity Certificates

Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list all those in his Department who have authority to issue public interest immunity certificates; how many such certificates have been issued in each of the last five years; and what were the main reasons for them. [1426]

Sir George Young: A claim to public interest immunity relating to departmental documents or information is normally made by the appropriate Minister. No certificates signed by Ministers in my Department have been produced in proceedings in the last five years. Certificates were signed in 1990 and 1992 and in relation to them. I refer to my reply to the hon. Member for Clwyd, South-West (Mr. Jones) on 16 October 1995, Official Report, column 91.

M11 Link Road

Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) how much has so far been spent on legal surveillance and other relevant costs to construct cases against people protesting against the building of the M11 link road; how much further public expenditure is expected to bring the cases to trail; how much it is expected will be recouped if the cases are successful; and if he will make a statement; [323]

Mr. Norris: I have asked the chief executive of the Highways Agency to write to the hon. Member.

Letter from Lawrie Haynes to Mr. Harry Cohen, dated 22 November 1995:


22 Nov 1995 : Column: 150

Forth Rail Bridge

Mr. Donohue: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when Railtrack expects to be able to carry out the structural investigation of the Forth rail bridge in accordance with the stipulation of the Health and Safety Executive as part of its investigation of the Forth rail bridge. [1254]

Mr. Watts: Railtrack is currently carrying out the structural analysis of the bridge, as requested by the Health and Safety Executive.

Mr. Donohue: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what guidance his Department issued to Railtrack in relation to its co-operation with the Health and Safety Executive's report on the structural condition of the Forth rail bridge. [1256]

Mr. Watts: The Department has issued no specific guidance to Railtrack.

Mr. Donohue: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much was spent on painting the Forth rail bridge in each financial year since 1989-1990; and how the arrangements for painting the bridge have been changed during this period. [1258]

Mr. Watts: I understand that British Rail spent approximately £0.5 million on painting and £0.5 million on other maintenance in each financial year from 1989-90 to 1993-94. Railtrack had a similar spending programme in 1994-95, and also completed a £4 million investment programme to replace the weighbeams and renew the rails in July 1994. In the current financial year, Railtrack has doubled the painting budget.

Mr. Donohue: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement indicating the reasons why Railtrack have delayed carrying out a comprehensive structural investigation of the Forth rail bridge. [1413]

Mr. Watts: Railtrack is currently carrying out the structural analysis of the bridge, as requested by the Health and Safety Executive. I understand that this analysis is taking slightly longer than planned, due to the complexity of the project.

Mr. Donohue: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement on the current painting and maintenance arrangements for the Forth rail bridge; and to what extent these have been altered during the last year. [1257]

Mr. Watts: In July 1995, Railtrack appointed Amec to provide a construction management system ensuring the safe co-ordination of all contractors working on the structure of the bridge. Maintenance has since been organised into 17 distinct work packages and new contracts have been let accordingly. Painting is being carried out by the infrastructure maintenance unit Scotland of British Rail infrastructure services and by Wilkie Hooke.

22 Nov 1995 : Column: 151

Mr. Donohue: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what representations his Department has received from the Health and Safety Executive relating to the delays in the publication of its report on the structural condition of the Forth rail bridge. [1253]

Mr. Watts: None.

Mr. Donohue: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when his Department originally requested the Health and Safety Executive to publish its report on the structural condition of the Forth rail bridge; and what is the expected timetable for this project. [1255]

Mr. Watts: The Department agreed that the Health and Safety Executive should publish its report when the assessment was complete. I understand that HSE's original timetable has slipped slightly and that it now hopes to be able to publish its report early in the new year.


Next Section Index Home Page