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23 July 2007 : Column 670W—continued

Departments: Visits Abroad

Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many overseas visits were made by (a) officials and (b) Ministers within her responsibility, and at what cost, in each year since 1997. [151652]

Jim Fitzpatrick: This information can be provided only at disproportionate cost. Since 1999, the Government have published on an annual basis, a list of all overseas visits by Cabinet Ministers costing in excess of £500, as well as the total cost of all ministerial travel overseas. Copies of the lists are available in the Libraries of the House. Information for 2006-07 is currently being compiled and will be published before the summer recess. All travel is undertaken in accordance with the “Civil Service Management Code” and the “Ministerial Code”.

Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency: Shrewsbury

Lembit Öpik: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to the answer of 5 June 2007, Official Report, columns 394-5W, on the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency: Shrewsbury, how long the Shrewsbury Office of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency took to process the vehicle registration application in respect of (a) DX07OVF (Chassis No. ending 330934) and (b) CU07XDZ (Chassis No. ending 177735); and if she will make a statement. [150620]


23 July 2007 : Column 671W

Jim Fitzpatrick: While every effort is made to adhere to published service times, fluctuations in workloads can occasionally result in a failure to meet targets. Application forms to register CU07XDZ and DX07OVF were received at the Shrewsbury office of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) on 3 July 2007, but were not processed until 10 July 2007. Registration Certificates for both vehicles were issued on 13 July 2007.

Driving Under Influence: Accidents

Susan Kramer: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many (a) car drivers and (b) passengers died in drink driving-related accidents in (i) December and (ii) January in each year since 2003, broken down by local authority area. [151905]

Jim Fitzpatrick: The information requested is not available by local authority area.

Susan Kramer: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many road traffic accidents were caused by drink-driving in each year since 2003, broken down by local authority area. [151906]

Jim Fitzpatrick: The estimated number of personal injury road accidents involving at least one driver or rider over the legal alcohol limit can be found in table 2a of the ‘Drinking and Driving’ article in ‘Road Casualties Great Britain’, available at

Estimates are calculated on a national basis. Local authority estimates are not available.

Driving: Licensing

Mr. Goodwill: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment she has made of the implications of the arrangements by which a Chinese driving licence can be exchanged for a British licence, via a Hong Kong licence, for road safety in England; how many licences have been issued in exchange for Hong Kong licences; and if she will make a statement. [151475]

Jim Fitzpatrick: The arrangements which allow the exchange of Hong Kong licences for British licences are governed by legislation.

This requires the exchange of a Hong Kong licence even if it was issued as a result of a test passed elsewhere. There is no discretion but officials are considering the effect of the legislation.

Approximately 4,500 Hong Kong licences are exchanged for a British licence each year. Figures are not available for how many were issued as a result of a test passed in Hong Kong as this information is not required for the exchange process.

First Great Western

Peter Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if she will make it her policy to terminate the franchise held by First Great Western; and if she will make a statement. [151279]


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Mr. Tom Harris: First Great Western is not currently in breach of either the punctuality or reliability benchmarks specified in the Franchise Agreement.

Garage and Petrol Stations: East Sussex

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many filling stations in (a) Eastbourne and (b) East Sussex are (i) able to accommodate and (ii) offer alternative fuel types for cars. [151431]

Jim Fitzpatrick: This information is not held centrally by Government. However information on geographical locations is available on the Energy Saving Trust website at:

The Government provide funds to the Energy Saving Trust to run their Infrastructure grant programme. The grants assist the building of refuelling stations for alternative fuels (natural gas/biogas, hydrogen and bio-ethanol).

M3: Road Traffic

Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the volume of traffic (a) on the M3 motorway between junctions 6 and 7 and (b) entering and leaving the motorway at those junctions was in each year since 1993. [151999]

Mr. Tom Harris: Traffic data on the volume of traffic on the M3 motorway between junctions 6 and 7 are only available from 1995 to 2006. Information on traffic entering and leaving the motorway at these junctions is only available for 2005 and 2006. The information is shown in the following tables.

Vo lume of traffic M3 junctions 6-7— annual average daily traffic flows in vehicles/day
Junction 6-7 eastbound Junction 7-6 westbound

1995

38,222

37,946

1996

39,387

39,303

1997

41,177

40,956

1998

42,331

42,770

1999

43,138

43,418

2000

(1)n/a

43,995

2001

44,938

45,122

2002

45,108

43,948

2003

45,074

45,298

2004

45,060

44,217

2005

44,952

43,744

2006

45,930

46,616

(1) Not available as the automatic traffic counting sites were out of operation.
Source:
Southern Region Trunk Road Traffic Monitoring Reports 2005 and 2006, HA TRADS2.

Volume of traffic entering M3 junctions 6 and— annual average daily traffic flows in vehicles/day
Junction 6 on-slip westbound Junction 6 on-slip eastbound Junction 7 on-slip westbound Junction 7 on-slip eastbound

2005(1)

8,032

15,145

4,014

1,744

2006

8,550

13,568

4,233

3,936

(1 )Data not available prior to year stated as automatic traffic counting sites on slip roads were not installed until 2005.
Source:
Southern Region Trunk Road Traffic Monitoring Reports 2005 and 2006, HA TRADS2.

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Volume of traffic leaving M3 junctions 6 and 7—annual average daily traffic flows in vehicles/day
Junction 6 off-slip westbound Junction 6 off-slip eastbound Junction 7 off-slip westbound Junction 7 off-slip eastbound

2005(1)

12,879

8,169

3,024

4,034

2006

13,100

8,233

2,971

4,070

(1) Data not available prior to year stated as automatic traffic counting sites on slip roads were not installed until 2005.
Source:
Southern Region Trunk Road Traffic Monitoring Reports 2005 and 2006. HA TRADS2.

Metronet

Mr. Prisk: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what estimate her Department has made of the public financial liabilities which may arise from Metronet going into administration. [151818]

Ms Rosie Winterton: Transport for London and London Underground are in discussions with PPP administrators to identify the best long term financial outcome resulting from the administration of Metronet’s activities. It would be premature to comment on any liabilities while those discussions are still in their early stages.

Motor Vehicles: Registration

David Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what requirements for (a) MOT and (b) vehicle insurance are placed on owners of vehicles used in the UK but registered in other EU member states. [151247]

Jim Fitzpatrick: The information is as follows.

Motor Vehicles: Testing

Mr. Goodwill: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what proportion of vehicles other than HGVs and LGVs failed the MOT test for reasons limited to exhaust emissions in the last 12 months. [151466]

Jim Fitzpatrick: The Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) is responsible for the operation of the MOT Scheme. Statistics regarding the number of vehicles that failed the MOT test on the grounds of emissions standards are published annually in VOSA’s Effectiveness Report. This is available on line at www.vosa.gov.uk and in the House of Commons Library, Business and Transport Section.

Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when she plans to consult on changes to the UK's MOT testing regime. [152440]

Jim Fitzpatrick: We will be consulting shortly.


23 July 2007 : Column 674W

Motorways: Repairs and Maintenance

Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the average cost per mile is to resurface a motorway with (a) noise reducing materials and (b) non-noise reducing materials; and if she will make a statement. [151820]

Mr. Tom Harris: Motorways are only resurfaced with noise reducing materials. The average cost per mile for resurfacing a motorway, with three lanes in each direction plus a hard shoulder with a noise reducing surface, is approximately £180,000. This excludes the costs for traffic management, contract preliminaries, any road strengthening and other consequential works.

Official Cars: Ministers

Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many Ministers have opted not to take up the use of a ministerial car since May 2005. [151266]

Jim Fitzpatrick: Since 2005, one Minister has opted not to take-up the use of a ministerial car through the Government Car and Despatch Agency.

Railways: EU Action

Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what timescale will be covered by the UK’s proposed derogation from the EU proposal 2004/0048 (COD) for a European Parliament and Council directive on the certification of train drivers operating locomotives and trains on the Community’s rail network. [151452]

Mr. Tom Harris: The renewable derogation allowing member states to disapply on a time-limited basis provisions in the proposed directive on the certification of train drivers operating locomotives and trains is for a period of 10 years.

The UK is minded to invoke this derogation. However, details of its implementation, especially with regard to any future renewal of the derogation, will be subject to consultation with the industry and users once the final text has been agreed both by the European Council and the European Parliament.

Railways: Scotland

Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions she has had with Ministers in the Scottish Executive on the development of high speed rail links between Scotland and London. [150492]

Mr. Tom Harris: The Secretary of State has not met the Scottish Executive to discuss a high-speed rail link between Scotland and London.

Department for Transport Ministers and officials regularly consult the Scottish Executive on reserved railway matters which are of strategic importance to Scotland, including issues concerning cross-border capacity and franchising.


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The Government will set out their position on high-speed rail links in the HLOS Rail White Paper later in the week.


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