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Health and Safety Executive

Mr. Gareth R. Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what the planned budget of the Health and Safety Executive is for each of the next three years. [152606]

Mr. Meacher: The Health and Safety Commission's gross budget within the DETR's departmental expenditure limit for the next three years is £247.9 million for 2001-02, £258.8 million for 2002-03 and £264.8 million for 2003-04.

Of this budget £59.4 million will be raised from income in 2001-02, £58.4 million from income in 2002-03 and £54.4 million from income in 2003-04. The remainder will be paid by the Government from grant-in-aid to the Commission.

The figures exclude the Health and Safety Laboratory budget, which operates on a net nil administration cost regime.

Mr. Gareth R. Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what the budget of the Health and Safety Executive was in each of the last 10 years. [152605]

Mr. Meacher: The budget of the Health and Safety Executive for each of the last 10 years is described in the table.

£000
Financial yearTotal grossTotal net
1991-92198,360157,700
1992-93215,227171,324
1993-94229,199180,489
1994-95229,620188,364
1995-96228,676186,826
1996-97215,885179,487
1997-98218,659180,957
1998-99221,310182,228
1999-2000231,254186,855
2000-01247,775192,853

The total net figures are net of receipts received for publications and other chargeable activities.


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The figures reflect accounting arrangements changed as a result of the Health and Safety Laboratory operating a net running cost regime from 1 April 1996.

Construction Industry (Health and Safety)

Mr. Gareth R. Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions how many health and safety inspectors who are able to inspect construction sites there are in each Government region. [152607]

Mr. Meacher: The number of health and safety inspectors who are able to inspect construction sites is 488. This is broken down on a HSE Divisional basis set out in table 1. These staff are not all allocated to construction work.

Table 1: Band 2/3 operational inspectors

DivisionNumber
Scotland60
Yorkshire and North East67
North West68
Midlands69
Wales and West85
London and South East65
Home Counties74
Total488

Generally, inspection work is carried out by Band 3 inspectors, and managed by Band 2 inspectors. Band 4 inspectors (those under training) do not normally carry out inspection of construction sites.


The current allocations to construction work for the 2001-02 workyear are as follows.

Table 2: Band 2/3's allocated to construction work

DivisionNumber
Scotland13
Yorkshire and North East14
North West13
Midlands14
Wales and West17
London and South East27
Home Counties18
Total116

This figure includes the Band 2 managers who manage the construction groups and produces a total ring fence number of 116 inspectors allocated to construction.


Mr. Gareth R. Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions how many (a) routine inspections of construction sites and (b) inspections of construction sites in response to an accident there have been in each of the last five years. [152603]

Mr. Meacher: The table shows the number of inspection and investigation contacts made by inspectors from HSE's Field Operations Directorate to construction sites (based on the Standard Industrial Classification categorisation) for each of the last five years.

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Number of contacts

InspectionInspection resulting from accident
1996-9733,937890
1997-9824,8281,087
1998-9921,0241,467
1999-200018,4211,670
2000-01(10)14,3092,769

(10) Incomplete year using data up to 5 March 2001


Nuclear Material

Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will make a statement on the long-term strategy for the storage of waste arising from the decommissioning of nuclear reactors. [152687]

Mr. Meacher: The Government's policy is that radioactive wastes, including waste from the decommissioning of nuclear reactors, should be managed in ways that protect the safety of the public, the workforce and the environment, now and in the future. This is a complex issue and the UK Government and the devolved Administrations will publish a consultation paper setting out detailed proposals as soon as we can. This paper will begin the process that will lead to the implementation of a radioactive waste management policy capable of commanding widespread support across the UK.

Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will make a statement on liaison between the emergency services and local authorities and BNFL on the transportation of nuclear materials by (a) road and (b) rail. [152685]

Mr. Hill: All transporters of nuclear material in Great Britain, including BNFL, are required by regulation to have emergency procedures to cover any shipment in the event of an accident. Liaison with local authorities and emergency services is not a regulatory requirement.

The nuclear industry, including BNFL, has a nation- wide emergency response organisation called RADSAFE, which has been drawn up after consultation with the relevant national bodies and organisations, including the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) and the Chief and Assistant Chief Fire Officers Association (CACFOA).

Selby Rail Accident (Crash Barriers)

Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what steps he is taking to review the adequacy of crash barriers on the approach roads to bridges over railway lines; and if he will make a statement. [152853]

Mr. Hill: I am extremely grateful to the HSE and to TRL for their speedy consideration of the factors involved in the tragic accident at Great Heck near Selby on 28 February 2001. HSE and TRL will be continuing their investigations, but it is becoming apparent that there was nothing the railway industry could reasonably have done to prevent the train collision. It also appears that there were no technical matters connected with the road infrastructure that would help explain why the vehicle left the M62 in the first place. The road surface appears to have been adequate and the safety barriers more than met

12 Mar 2001 : Column: 467W

the current standards. We will, of course, have to await the report of the police into the incident. But in the interim my right hon. Friend the Deputy Prime Minister has asked the HSC to convene and lead a working group that will look at the circumstances of incidents where vehicles have blocked rail lines and whether there are features in common that might have been preventable. In parallel the Highways Agency will be reviewing its standards for safety barriers.

Youth Parliament

Mr. Rowe: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what plans he has to meet members of the UK youth parliament to discuss the transport and environment issues raised in the parliament's manifesto. [152965]

Mr. Robert Ainsworth: We will consider sympathetically any request from the UK youth parliament to meet them to discuss the transport and environment issues raised in the parliament's manifesto.

Housing (Islington)

Mr. Corbyn: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will list each housing capital improvement project financed by his Department in Islington since 1 May 1997. [153115]

Mr. Robert Ainsworth [holding answer 9 March 2001]: Since May 1997, the London Borough of Islington has been allocated the following amounts of funding for specific housing capital improvement projects:

Project/year£
Capital Challenge (Marquess Estate)
1997-981,500,000
1998-994,500,000
1999-20003,500,000
Estate Action (Harvist Estate)
1997-981,303,000
1998-991,693,000
1999-20001,119,100
2000-01777,900
2001-02500,000
Single Regeneration Budget
Kings Cross Partnership (housing projects)
1997-98380,000
1998-991,962,000
1999-20001,301,000
2000-01846,000
2001-02577,000
Finsbury Park (Tollington Estate)
1999-200045,000
2000-01270,000
2001-021,200,000

The following has also been allocated to the borough. However, it is a matter for the local authority to decide how this funding is allocated between their priorities.

12 Mar 2001 : Column: 468W

£
Housing Investment Programme
1997-989,996,000
1998-998,170,000
1999-20009,816,000
2000-0128,557,000
2001-0212,863,000
Basic Credit Approvals(11)
1997-988,977,000
1998-9911,154,000
1999-200011,333,000
2000-0127,822,000
Capital Receipts Initiative
1997-982,848,000
1998-999,168,000
1999-20008,334,000
Major Repairs Allowance
2001-0225,434,034

(11) All services



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