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Mr. Paul Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to his answer of 19 April 2004, Official Report, column 6263W, on the Transport Energy Best Practice Programme, what proportion of (a) freight vehicle kilometres and (b) freight tonne kilometres these companies account for, (i) in total and (ii) broken down by vehicle type. 
Mr. Jamieson: The Department does not currently hold the detailed data necessary to answer this question. However the 5 per cent. of freight transport companies mentioned in the answer of 19 April 2004, Official Report, column 6263W, on the Transport Energy Best Practice Programme, referred to a representative cross-section of the industry.
Mr. McNulty: Rural Bus Subsidy Grant (RBSG) is paid to local transport authorities. In the case of Preston, this is Lancashire County Council. It is for the authority to decide which services should be supported with the grant. We understand from the county council that, while Preston is mainly urban, there are 11 rural bus services commencing or terminating in Preston that are currently supported by RBSG.
Mr. McNulty: Residents of Preston will benefit from the new TransPennine Express franchise, which commenced in February. The franchise secures investment of around £260m, which will include the introduction of a new fleet of 100 mph diesel trains leading to increased capacity, improved service quality and performance across the region. A new northern franchise, which will include local and regional services through Preston, is out for tender. Work continues on the West Coast Main Line upgrade, which will see reduction in journey times along the route and increases in service frequency.
Mr. McNulty: A total of 3.8 km of on-road cycle lanes and 5.6 km of off-road cycle tracks has been provided in Preston since 1997. A further 6.6 km of off-road cycle path, including 3.8 km of improved canal towpath are due to open this summer.
In the Preston local authority area there were nine deaths in road accidents in 1997 and two deaths in 2002, the latest year for which information is
4 May 2004 : Column 1395W
available. The number of serious injuries in road accidents fell by 2 per cent. from 156 in 1997 to 153 in 2002.
Mr. Jamieson: There is no established definition or standard for energy efficient tyres. It is not possible, therefore, to estimate the proportion of energy efficient tyres currently being used on vehicles. We understand that tyres generally are becoming more energy efficient as manufacturers are incorporating energy efficient design features along with new technology. The major tyre manufacturers all sell a range of tyres, some of which are more energy efficient than others.
Mr. Jamieson: The most recent information the Department for Transport has on the numbers of new tyres purchased as replacements in the United Kingdom for the years indicated is shown in the table. The data is grouped by vehicle type or use rather than by tyre size and tyre type due to the large number of sizes available in the marketplace currently. Data for 2003 is not yet available. Further information may be available from the trade associations: The British Tyre and Rubber Manufacturers Association and the Imported Tyre Manufacturers Association.
|Car tyres||Utility vehicles and off road 4x4||Heavy vehicle tyres||Tyres for other vehicles|
Mr. Jamieson: As stated in my earlier answer (ref 169906), there is no formal definition of an energy efficient tyre. However our information suggests that, for trucks, the more energy efficient tyres cost around 5 per cent. more than normal or low energy efficiency tyres. For passenger car tyres, we understand there is no significant difference in the costs between products from the same manufacturer.
Mr. Paul Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to his answer of 19 April 2004, Official Report, column 63W, on fuel efficient tyres, if he will estimate the reduction in emissions that would result from all freight vehicles switching to these tyres. 
Mr. Jamieson: If all freight vehicles in the UK achieved a saving of 7 per cent. in fuel consumption, this would reduce emissions by around half a million tonnes of carbon. However, as I explained in my earlier answer (ref 169906), we do not know how many trucks are already fitted with the most energy efficient tyres so we cannot estimate the effect on emissions of all freight vehicles changing to use these types of tyres.
Mr. Paul Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to his answer of 19 April 2004, Official Report, column 63W, on fuel efficient tyres, what the average distance it is estimated these tyres will last; and what the figure for ordinary tyres is. 
Mr. Jamieson: The Department is not aware of any independently verified figures quantifying the difference in tyre life between more and less energy efficient tyres. As I stated in my answer of 19 April 2004, Official Report, column 63W, there is some evidence that the tread wear rate for current energy efficient tyres can be inferior to those of standard tyres. However, this is not quantified.
Mr. Jamieson: As I stated in my answer of 19 April 2004, Official Report, column 6263W, through the TransportEnergy Best Practice programme, my Department has recently published a free leaflet describing trials of energy efficient tyres fitted to trucks. These trials have also been reported in the last two editions of the programme's free newsletter, "Freight Future", which is distributed to hauliers via trade journals.
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