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21 Dec 2004 : Column 1566W—continued

Cape Wrath Range

John Thurso: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the dates on which the Cape Wrath range has been subject to short notice activation in (a) 2004 and (b) each of the preceding four years; and on which dates no activity took place at the range. [200921]

Mr. Caplin [holding answer 30 November 2004]: No formal system is in place to record Short Notice Activations. A comparison between the Cape Wrath Range Notifications issued by Flag Officer Scotland Northern England and Northern Ireland (FOSNNI)
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and the local records at the Cape Wrath Range has identified just one such activation since 2000. This is as far back as FOSNNI's records go.

The occasion identified in the FOSNNI records occurred in September 2004, when FOSNNI received and approved a request to allow the aerial bombardment of Garvie Island during the week commencing 13 September.

Although bombardment of Garvie Island only took place on 14–15 September 2004, military activity did continue on the Range throughout the period covered by the Short Notice Activation.

Challenger Tank (Chain Gun)

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what circumstances led to the recent issue of instructions about the application of the safety catch to the chain gun, as fitted to the Challenger tank; [204946]

(2) under what circumstances army personnel have been ordered (a) not to apply and (b) to apply the safety catch to the chain gun, as fitted to the Challenger tank. [204947]

Mr. Ingram: The applied safety lever on the chain gun, which is mounted in the turret of the Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank, is redundant by design and incapable of operation by the crew. It has never formed part of the crew safety drills, which are designed to compensate for this. Following an undemanded firing incident in Iraq in April 2003, a review of the chain gun firing drills on Challenger 2 was carried out and a change made to further reduce the possibility of the vehicle commander inadvertently firing the gun.

The armament selector switch remains the primary safety device and the chain gun is safe to use provided operational safety instructions and drills are followed.

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what action has been taken to rectify problems associated with the chain gun as fitted to the Challenger Tank. [204948]

Mr. Ingram: A single case of undemanded firing of the chain gun on Challenger 2 occurred in Iraq in April 2003. There were no injuries as a result of the incident and investigations revealed that it resulted from a short circuit in the firing system. A modification has subsequently been designed and manufactured, which has now completed trials by the Design Authority, BAE Land Systems (formerly Alvis Vickers Ltd.). The modification is due to be considered for acceptance before Christmas and, subject to acceptance, will proceed to implementation.

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many incidents have been reported of the jamming of the chain gun as fitted to the Challenger Tank, in (a) Iraq and (b) elsewhere, with particular reference to instances of the gun being fired without command; and what procedure is followed when an incident occurs. [204975]

Mr. Ingram: There have been four reported cases of jamming of the chain gun on Challenger 2 in Iraq and 51 in total since its introduction into service. Jamming/stoppages may occur during normal operation of the
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chain gun, as they do on all machine guns, and are not linked to undemanded firing, of which there has only been one reported incident. In the event of a jam or stoppage in the chain gun, Challenger 2 crews follow an established drill to clear the problem.


Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when the Minister of State for the Armed Forces will reply to the letters to him from the hon. Member for Vale of York, of 17 May, 6 July and 28 September, regarding the number of departmental personnel in the Vale of York. [201908]

Mr. Caplin: I refer the hon. Member to the answers I gave on 10 May 2004, Official Report, column 126W and 25 May 2004, Official Report, column 1614W.

The Department is collating from records held at local level, although the information is not currently held in the format requested.


Lembit Öpik: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what (a) the terms of reference and (b) scope of the further review into the Deepcut allegations announced on 30 November are; who will lead the review; and if he will make a statement. [205371]

Mr. Ingram: I refer the hon. Member to my written ministerial statement on 15 December 2004, Official Report, column 132WS.


Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the average cost per person for emergency dental provision in the UK for dependents of military personnel was in the last period for which figures are available. [206703]

Mr. Caplin: The Defence Dental Agency (DDA) is not responsible for providing emergency dental provision in the United Kingdom for dependants of military personnel, as provision of that service falls to the NHS, rather than the Ministry of Defence.

There is therefore no cost to the MOD for such treatment.

Departmental Expenditure

Mr. George Osborne: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the running costs of the Department were in each year since 1997, broken down by (a) electricity, (b) water, (c) gas, (d) telephones, (e) mobile telephones and (f) televisions. [206675]

Mr. Caplin: I will write to the hon. Member and a copy of my letter will be placed in the Library of the House.

Departmental Projects

Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list all (a) category A, (b) category B and (c) category C projects of his Department that have
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received (i) Initial Gate and (ii) Main Gate approval since 31 March 1997; and when approval was achieved in each case. [199829]

Mr. Ingram: The following table provides details of Initial Gate and Main Gate approvals given by the Investment Approvals Board. The information covers all current Category A, B and C equipment projects that have had either Initial Gate or Main Gate approval but
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which had not achieved In Service Date (ISD) as of 1 November 2004. The table shows original approval dates only and does not include any subsequent re-approvals. Before April 2002, approval for non-equipment projects was delegated to a number of different organisations within the Department. As records are not held centrally, information for non-equipment projects approved before that date could be compiled only at disproportionate cost.
CatProjectDate approved
Non-equipment approvals for current post-initial gate/pre-main gate Cat A-C projects
AProject Aphrodite—Cyprus PFI projectMay 2002
AInner London BarracksAugust 2002
ADefence Training ReviewAugust 2002
ADefence Housing Executive—Prime ContractOctober 2002
ACorsham Development ProjectOctober 2002
AInterim Storage Of Laid-Up SubmarinesDecember 2002
ADefence Medical Information Capability Programme (Formerly Surgeon General's Information Strategy (SGIS)January 2003
AWhole Fleet ManagementMarch 2003
ANetwork Integration Test and Experimental Capability (Formerly Experimental Network Integration Facility)July 2003
AFuture Defence Supply Chain Initiative (Formerly PDCSI)August 2003
AMaterial Flow—Management of Material in TransitNovember 2003
AProject PRIME (Portsmouth Regeneration and Investment in the Maritime Estate)March 2004
AHuman Resources Service Delivery Organisation (Formerly Future Civilian HR (FCHR))April 2004
AMOD Estates LondonJune 2004
AD154 Project DevonportJuly 2004
BDefence Academy ShrivenhamJuly 2004
BAir Movements OperationsAugust 2004
BDefence Travel ModernisationNovember 2004
CLand Digitisation IntegrationMarch 2002
CDefence Estates IS (Formerly Project Alexander Information System)March 2003
CDCS A End to End Service Management SystemMay 2003
CFuture Pay ProjectJune 2003
Non-equipment approvals for main gate Cat A-C projects
AWhite Fleet PFIOctober 2000
ASingle Living AccommodationSeptember 2002
ADigitisation of the Battlespace (Land)—Com BAT, Infra and PlatformSeptember 2002
AOtterburn Training AreaNovember 2002
AProject Aquatrine—Water and Wastewater Services PFIDecember 2002
AHayes Record OfficeJanuary 2003
ASSN Berthing HMNB ClydeMarch 2003
ADefence Estates Regional Prime Contracting—ScotlandMarch 2003
AProject NEPTUNEMarch 2003
ADefence Information Infrastructure (Army) (Formerly Army Information Infrastructure (All)March 2003
ADefence Information Infrastructure (Head Office)July 2003
ADefence Information Infrastructure (Fleet First)August 2003
ACatterick Garrison SDR Project—Gaza/Megiddo LinesOctober 2003
ADLO BCP Defence Electronic Commerce Service—E-CataloguesDecember 2003
ALogistics Information Technology System—Delamination for DII/FFebruary 2004
ADefence Estates Regional Prime Contracting—South WestMarch 2004
AColchester GarrisonJune 2004
AJoint Personnel AdministrationJuly 2004
AProjects Allenby and ConnaughtAugust 2004
BProject ArmadaFebruary 2003
BDefence Resource Management Programme (incorporating DRMS)May 2003
BWoodbridgeJune 2003
BContractor Logistics (formerly Contractor Owned Deployed Operations (CONDO)August 2003
BProject RD83 Rosyth Dockyard DecommissioningSeptember 2004
CProject EXTRACTMay 2000
CHuman Resources Management SystemOctober 2002
CMinistry of Defence Police—Project CONTACTMarch 2003
CProject SAPPHIREJune 2003
CDefence E-Learning Delivery and Management CapabilitySeptember 2003
CIntegration Authority/System Integration ArchitectureDecember 2003
CInterim Alternate HQJanuary 2004
CFuture Pay ProjectOctober 2004
ADLO BCP Defence Electronic Commerce Service—Shared Working EnvironmentApril 2004
Equipment approvals for current post-initial gate/pre-main gate Cat A-C projects
AAVTSDecember 2000
AFuture Strategic Tanker AircraftDecember 2000
AIFPAMay 2001
AFIST—Future Integrated Soldier TechnologyAugust 2001
AASTUTE Subsequent ProcurementSeptember 2001
ABattlefield Light Utility Helicopter (BLUH)December 2001
AGround Based Air Defence Phase 1February 2002
AFALCONJuly 2002
ACombined Aerial Target Service (CATS)September 2002
ASurface Combatant Maritime Rotorcraft (SCMR)September 2002
ASARMarch 2003
AAdvanced Jet TrainerAugust 2003
BUKCEC Frigate and Destroyer programmeMay 2000
BLIMAWS(G)March 2001
BJoint Casualty Treatment ShipDecember 2001
BWASPSeptember 2002
BJOUSTJuly 2003
BUnited Kingdom Military Flying Training SystemSeptember 2003
BAnti-Structures MunitionApril 2004
BTIEC—Harrier GR9June 2004
BTIEC—Tornado GR4June 2004
BJETTSJuly 2004
CJACAMARNovember 2000
CCUTLASSApril 2002
CANSONMay 2002
CMaritime Biological Detection System (MBDS)September 2002
CAutomated Software Adaptive Radar (ASAR)October 2002
CLIMAWS(R)October 2002
CMORTALNovember 2002
CTactical Beyond Line of SightDecember 2002
CDismounted Counter Mine CapabilityApril 2003
CASUW Littoral Defensive Anti Surface WarfareJuly 2003
CSecure Comms in AircraftJanuary 2004
CLight Equipment TransporterMay 2004
CTyphoon LDPMay 2004
Equipment approvals for current post-main gate/pre-lSD Cat A-C projects
ASwiftsure and Trafalgar Class Update (Final Phase)January 1994
ASting Ray Life Extension and Capability UpgradeMay 1995
ABrimstoneMarch 1996
AASTUTEMarch 1997
AAirborne Stand Off Radar (ASTOR)June 1999
AA400MMay 2000
ATyphoon ASTAOctober 2000
AFuture Joint Combat AircraftJanuary 2001
ASKYNET 5February 2002
ANext Generation Light Anti-Armour WeaponMay 2002
ACIP—ComBAT, DBL Infrastructure, Platform EISAOctober 2002
AApache BOWMAN ConnectivityMarch 2003
AC Vehicle Capability—PFIDecember 2003
AM-TADSSeptember 2004
BSeawolf MLUMay 1999
BRNJTIDS STDLSeptember 1999
BSeawolf Block 2February 2000
BCORMORANTNovember 2000
BSonar 2087 DMSJanuary 2001
BTROJAN and TITANJanuary 2001
BSSTDJanuary 2001
BPuma HUMSMay 2001
BSea King HUMSMay 2001
BLynx HUMSMay 2001
BWheeled TankersJune 2001
BTerrierJuly 2002
BLight Forces Anti-Tank Guided WeaponJanuary 2003
BDefence HF Communications ServiceMarch 2003
BPrecision Guided BombJune 2003
BPANTHER Command and Liaison Vehicle (CLV)July 2003
BGMLRSJuly 2003
BNaval EHF/SHF Satellite Communications TerminalsSeptember 2003
CSaturn for Lynx Mk8January 1998
CPtarmigan Digital GatewayJune 1998
CSAWCSSeptember 1998
CSSNCESM EddystoneNovember 1999
CVanguard SSIP—SignatureMay 2000
C4.5KW GEN SETMay 2000
CLightweight Chemical Agent Detector(LCAD)December 2000
CTSS for SP HVMFebruary 2001
CSIFF for HVMApril 2001
CFC BISAMay 2002
CFFCSNovember 2002
CAH Air Manoeuvre CTSDecember 2002
CCIS into CASTApril 2003
CSRS(A)929 8.33 KHz programmeAugust 2003
CCSIS Special ProjectsSeptember 2003
CTLAM Block IV Weapon SystemFebruary 2004
CGeneral Service Respirator (GSR)October 2004

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