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18 Feb 2008 : Column 163W—continued

Traffic Accidents

Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) how many traffic accidents involving at least one pedestrian casualty there were in each year since 1997, broken down by the smallest geographical unit by which this information is collected; [186850]

(2) how many traffic accidents involving at least one pedestrian casualty and road freight there were in each year since 1997, broken down by the smallest geographical unit by which this information is collected; [186851]

(3) how many fatal traffic accidents there were in each year since 1997, broken down by the smallest geographical unit by which this information is collected. [186852]

Jim Fitzpatrick: Tables showing information on reported personal injury road accidents involving (a) at least one pedestrian casualty, (b) at least one pedestrian casualty and HGV and (c) the number of fatal road accidents in each local authority in GB for 1997 to 2006 have been deposited in the Libraries of the House.

Transport Innovation Fund

Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when her Department expects to announce which Transport Innovation Fund bids will be granted programme entry. [183653]

Ms Rosie Winterton: We have received Transport Innovation Fund proposals from Greater Manchester and Cambridgeshire which we are currently considering. We expect to announce the first decisions later this year.

Transport: Disabled

Mr. Holloway: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what measures of support are in place to help those with temporary disabilities gain increased mobility and access to essential facilities. [182555]

Ms Rosie Winterton: There has been significant progress in making public transport accessible through regulations made under the Disability Discrimination Act 1995. For a number of years all new buses, coaches and trains have had to meet accessibility standards and 58 per cent. of buses and over 40 per cent. of trains
18 Feb 2008 : Column 164W
now do so. The entire national fleet of buses must meet accessibility standards by 2017, and trains must meet them by 2020. People with temporary disabilities will benefit equally from these improvements.

In addition, transport providers are required by the Disability Discrimination Act to make reasonable adjustments to their services to make them accessible to disabled people. The Department of Transport has published best practice guidance on access to pedestrian and transport infrastructure. Designs that satisfy disabled people’s requirements will also meet the needs of many other people, including those with temporary disabilities.

As part of the Government’s Railways for All strategy we have made available £370 million to Network Rail to improve station accessibility by 2015, with over 90 stations already identified for improvement by 2011.

Recent European legislation concerning air transport and international rail transport creates new rights for disabled people and people with reduced mobility to improve the accessibility of these modes. The definition of reduced mobility would encompass temporary disabilities. The Commission plans to propose similar legislation in the areas of maritime transport and international bus and coach transport.

We are also currently consulting on proposals to extend the blue badge scheme to people with temporary disabilities.

Transport: Finance

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much (a) revenue support and (b) capital allocations for (i) Hampshire, (ii) Portsmouth and (iii) Southampton for (A) urban bus challenge, (B) kick start, (C) rural safety grant and (D) detrunked roads (1) there were in each year since 2005 and (2) are planned for each of the next three years. [185434]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The following tables sets out the revenue and capital support for these four specific funding lines that the Department has provided from 2005-06 onwards and what is planned for the next three years for Hampshire, Portsmouth and Southampton.

No funds have been granted, or are currently planned to be awarded to any of the three authorities in the period specified for rural road safety grant, but the tables includes figures for the similarly named specific road safety grant.

From 2008-09 onwards, the revenue support for detrunked roads and specific road safety grant will be incorporated within the general area-based grant, administered by the Department for Communities and Local Government.


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18 Feb 2008 : Column 166W
Revenue support
£000
2005-06 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10 2010-11

Hampshire County Council

Urban bus challenge

Kick-start

126.0

63.0

39.0

Detrunked Roads

428.7

439.4

450.4

461.6

473.2

485.0

Specific Road Safety Grant

2,160

2,245

2,237

2,202

Portsmouth

Specific Road Safety Grant

312.7

325.1

323.8

318.8

Southampton

Urban bus challenge

25

217

170

Kick-start

204.7

132.8

85.0

Specific Road Safety Grant

288.1

300.0

310.5

305.6


Capital allocations
£000
2005-06 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10 2010-11

Hampshire County Council

Specific Road Safety Grant

480.6

499.6

497.6

489.9

Portsmouth

Specific Road Safety Grant

69.6

72.3

72.0

70.9

Southampton

Specific Road Safety Grant

64.1

66.7

69.1

68.0


Transport: Sustainable Development

Robert Neill: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether the project on the sustainability of land use and transport in outer neighbourhoods has been completed. [184647]

Ms Rosie Winterton: No. This project is expected to complete in September 2008.

Transport: Tickets

Mr. Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to the answer of 29 November 2007, Official Report, columns 607-8W, on transport: tickets, what progress has been made to ensure smartcard readers in London are ITSO/Oyster dual-operable. [186414]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The Department for Transport continues to work closely with Transport for London to deliver the May 2006 agreement to make the Oyster estate interoperable with the ITSO smartcard standard, and to make Oyster Pay As You Go available on national rail in London. The detailed design and scoping study is still on target to deliver a fixed price and delivery schedule in April 2008 for the roll-out of ITSO/Oyster dual-operable smartcard readers.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Afghanistan

Mr. Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what aims and objectives he has set for British policy in Afghanistan. [185645]

Dr. Howells: As my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister set out in his statement to the House on 12 December 2007, Official Report, columns 303-07, there are four key areas of our long-term commitment in Afghanistan, including greater Afghan ownership; localisation and reconciliation; reconstruction; and greater burden sharing. This is a long-term effort: there are no quick wins.

Mark Pritchard: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the outcome was of his recent discussions with the US Secretary of State on Afghanistan. [186387]

Dr. Howells: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary had, in his own words “excellent” and “intensive” discussions with the US Secretary of State, followed by a joint visit to Afghanistan. As he noted, during his joint press conference with the US Secretary of State, in London on 6 February:

Afghanistan: Asylum

Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what procedures there are for processing asylum applications from locally-employed staff in Afghanistan. [185044]

Mr. Byrne: I have been asked to reply.

The 1951 United Nations Convention relating to the Status of Refugees defines a refugee as a person who is, among other things,

An individual who remains in the country of nationality is not, by definition, a refugee and cannot
18 Feb 2008 : Column 167W
seek asylum. A person who is outside the country of nationality should approach the local authorities in the third country or the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

Afghanistan: Detainees

Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the Answer of 4 February 2008, Official Report, column 759W, on Afghanistan: detainees, if he will place in the Library copies of the exchange of letters between the Afghan and UK governments on access to detainees by UK officials and human rights organisations. [186705]

David Miliband: The exchange of letters is publicly available on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s Afghanistan website (www.fco.gov.uk/ukandafghanistan). I have arranged for copies to be placed in the Library of the House.

Afghanistan: Drugs

Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how much funding the UK allocated to (a) the Counter Narcotics Police of Afghanistan, (b) the Afghan Special Narcotics Force and (c) the Counter Narcotics Criminal Justice Task Force in each of the last three years. [186721]

Dr. Howells: The information requested by the hon. Member is as follows:

£
2005-06 2006-07 2007-08

Counter Narcotics Police of Afghanistan

8.9 million

12.1 million

8.4 million

Afghan Special Narcotics Force

6.23 million

9.4 million

32.5 million

Counter Narcotics Criminal Justice Task Force

572,000

1.1 million

1 million


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