Mr. Steen : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps he is taking to pay compensation to the owners of Cornelis Johanna BM 204 for the defective test carried out by his Department in 1977 ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. McLoughlin : Matters relating to the surveys of this vessel under the Fishing Vessels (Safety Provisions) Rules 1975, including the test carried out in 1977, have been referred to the Treasury solicitor for advice.
Ms. Ruddock : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he has met representatives of the Association of Metropolitan Authorities to discuss the case for restoring the precepting status of the six metropolitan passenger transport authorities.
Column 94the six metropolitan passenger transport authorities and (b) others about their change in status from precepting to levying authorities.
Mr. Freeman : I have received a number of representations from the metropolitan county passenger transport authorities, the Association of Metropolitan Authorities, the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities and Members with constituency interests in PTA areas.
Mr. Rowe : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether his Department has made any assessment of the likely effect of seismic disturbance on the operation of the channel tunnel ; and what discussions have taken place with the channel tunnel safety authority on this subject.
Mr. Freeman : I understand that Eurotunnel is currently carrying out a programme of studies, which has been agreed by a group of seismic experts appointed by the Channel Tunnel Safety Authority and Eurotunnel, to satisfy the safety authority that the Eurotunnel design criterion for the tunnel affords an appropriate level of assurance against seismic risk. The studies are examining whether passengers can be evacuated safely and within a reasonable period in the event of an earthquake equivalent to the most serious ever known in the area. These studies should be complete by February 1992.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will give for InterCity (a) the number of faults which resulted in delays of 30 minutes or more and (b) the number of cancellations in each of the last two years, broken down by service area, date and cause where available.
-------------------------------------------------------------------- WCML |4,947|(7.7)|2,776|(7.9)|2,513|(3.9)|523 |(1.5) MML |619 |(2.8)|259 |(2.1)|878 |(3.9)|153 |(1.2) CROSS COUNTRY |3,118|(8.1)|1,341|(6.4)|711 |(1.8)|364 |(1.7) GWML |1,316|(2.8)|578 |(2.2)|1,081|(2.3)|535 |(2.0) GATWICK EXPRESS |301 |(0.7)|149 |(0.6)|1,438|(3.3)|1,592|(6.5) ECML |3,268|(9.2)|1,384|(6.6)|904 |(2.5)|424 |(2.0) ANGLIA |960 |(5.9)|310 |(3.6)|616 |(3.8)|119 |(1.4)
The Department does not hold data on the date and cause of delays and cancellations. These are management matters for British Rail.
Mr. Hinchliffe : To ask the Minister for the Arts if his Department has considered an application for an exhibition relating to an exhibition by the Yorkshire mining museum, entitled "Out of the Pits", to be displayed in the Upper Waiting Hall.
Column 95Mr. Renton : Yes. I am glad to sponsor the "Out of the Pits" exhibition in the Upper Waiting Hall.
The percentage of people registered as disabled employed in each Department of State at 1 June 1990, the latest date for which complete figures are available, was :
|Per cent. -------------------------------------------------------- Agriculture, Fisheries and Food |1.4 Cabinet Office |1.0 Crown Estate Office |4.4 Crown Prosecution Service |0.6 Her Majesty's Customs and Excise |1.3 Defence |0.9 Education and Science |2.6 Employment Group |3.2 Energy |1.1 Environment |0.9 Export Credit Guarantee Department |1.5 Foreign and Commonwealth Office |0.3 Health |0.6 Home Office |0.3 Inland Revenue |1.6 Land Registry |4.2 Lord Chancellor's Department |1.43 National Investment Loans Office |4.7 National Savings |2.8 Office of Population Census Surveys |2.1 Ordnance Survey |0.8 Overseas Development Administration |1.4 Paymaster General's Office |3.9 Property Service Agency |1.2 Scottish Office |1.2 Scottish Prison Service |0.1 Social Security |1.7 Her Majesty's Stationery Office |1.7 Her Majesty's Treasury |1.0 Trade and Industry |1.2 Transport |1.2 Welsh Office |1.4
There are also over 400 people working in Departments and agencies under the Department of Employment's sheltered placement scheme.
Column 96practice are included in the proposal by Nuclear Electric to restart one of the reactors at Trawsfynydd power station for a period of six months ; and what revision to the temperature of operation of each of the reactor core, fuel, coolant gas and reactor presure vessel shell is included in the proposed operations ;
(2) if he will make a statement about his current assessment of the frequency probability of failure incidents in the reactor pressure vessels deployed at each of the Magnox nuclear power stations ; (3) what effect delays in the reactor pressure vessel surveying programme at Trawsfynydd and other Magnox nuclear power stations have had on the timing of Nuclear Electric's preparation and submission of a revised safety case to the nuclear installations inspectorate ; (4) on what date Nuclear Electric submitted a revised nuclear safety case for the continued operation of each of the Magnox power stations to the nuclear installations inspectorate ; and what materials data, determined from the recent inspections of the reactor pressure vessel at Trawsfynydd and other Magnox nuclear power stations, are included in the revised safety case ;
(5) if he will make a statement on the progress of the reactor pressure vessel inspection and surveying programmes currently under way at Trawsfynydd nuclear power station ; and if physical obstacles encountered during these inspections have now been overcome.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : The details of any operational changes proposed in the revised safety case for a return to power at Trawsfynydd are a matter for Nuclear Electric plc. The assessment of the safety case is a matter for the Health and Safety Executive's nuclear installations inspectorate. The NII will not consent to the restart of the station until it is convinced that it is safe to do so.
In the light of developments at Trawsfynydd, NE has reviewed the position at its four other Magnox stations with steel pressure vessels, and following certain operational changes the NII has agreed to their continued operation up to the end of 1991. Full safety cases to enable the stations to operate beyond the end of the year were submitted to the NII on 11 September and are currently under consideration. I understand that the NII propose's to make an announcement by the end of this month.
Mr. Simon Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy (1) if he will make a statement on details of the temperature excursion that occurred in reactor 1 at Bradwell nuclear power station on 17 June 1991 ; what caused the increase in temperature ; and whether he has been informed of any disciplinary action by Nuclear Electric as a result of this incident ;
(2) if he will place in the Library a copy of the full report of the Nuclear Electric board of inquiry into the temperature excursion incident at Bradwell nuclear power station on 17 June 1991, and the report of the nuclear installations inspectorate ; and if he will also place in the Library details of any equipment modifications and revisions to management procedures that have been implemented as a result of the incident.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : I understand from the Health and Safety Executive's nuclear installations inspectorate that, during the return to service of Bradwell's reactor 1 on 17 June 1991, it was observed that the gas temperature limit in a small area of the reactor core was exceeded by 30 deg C. The temperature deviation was readily brought
Column 97back within limits by control rod insertion. This incident has been classified at level 2 on the international nuclear event scale--that is, a technical incident or anomaly not directly affecting plant safety.
I am advised by Nuclear Electric plc that incident inquiries are undertaken on a confidential basis in order to encourage the maximum disclosure of information. The details of such investigations are not, therefore, published. The conclusions and actions arising are, however, provided to the regulatory authorities.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will list, by year for the last four years and for the current year to date, the tonnages of coal imported into the United Kingdom, showing in his answer (a) the port the coal was unloaded at and (b) the country of origin of the coal.
Thousand tonnes |1987 |1988 |1989 |1990 |1991<3> -------------------------------------------------------------- Port of entry Immingham |669 |999 |1,268 |2,182 |2,482 London (including Tilbury) |538 |743 |782 |2,104 |2,395 Middlesbrough |2,501 |2,570 |2,812 |2,385 |2,328 Port Talbot |1,958 |1,997 |2,610 |2,885 |2,259 Medway |556 |565 |652 |855 |1,930 Greenock |1,216 |1,164 |1,162 |1,027 |1,081 Liverpool |65 |31 |286 |948 |1,080 Cardiff |222 |294 |229 |410 |435 Swansea |- |92 |134 |162 |377 Hull |19 |1 |44 |152 |364 Belfast |172 |192 |182 |332 |326 Others |1,865 |3,036 |1,975 |1,340 |1,284 |--- |--- |--- |--- |--- Total |9,781 |11,685 |12,137 |14,783 |16,341 Country of origin United States of America<1> |2,890 |4,073 |4,874 |6,176 |6,817 Australia<1> |3,459 |3,416 |2,676 |3,044 |3,924 Colombia<1> |319 |574 |874 |1,506 |2,059 USSR |89 |375 |181 |592 |730 Canada |362 |553 |729 |986 |592 South Africa |188 |276 |346 |356 |526 Poland |1,083 |1,270 |1,055 |1,043 |431 China |146 |319 |450 |69 |289 Belgium |192 |122 |78 |60 |219 Germany<2> |261 |191 |288 |250 |188 Venezuela |- |92 |86 |169 |159 Others<1> |790 |424 |501 |532 |407 |--- |--- |--- |--- |--- Total |9,781 |11,685 |12,137 |14,783 |16,341 <1>Some imports previously recorded by Customs and Excise as originating in the Netherlands have been re-allocated to the other countries indicated or, where revised country of origin data is not available, included in the residual entry, "Others". This re-allocation has been carried out for 1991 and estimates of such imports previously classified to the Netherlands have been included for 1990. Figures for earlier years have not been re-allocated to individual countries. <2>Includes imports previously recorded separately for the German Democratic Republic. <3>January to October. Source: HM Customs and Excise.
Mr. Hardy : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy (1) what sum was received by Nuclear Electric from the non-fossil fuel levy and from the electricity supply industry in the first six months of 1991-92 and in the year 1990-91 ;
(2) what proportion of (a) the income received by Nuclear Electric and (b) the cost of providing electricity by Nuclear Electric in 1990-91 was provided from the non-fossil fuel levy ; (3) what was the total value of the non-fossil fuel levy in the first six months of 1991-92 and in the full year 1990-91.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : The Office of Electricity Regulation estimates that total receipts for the fossil fuel levy in 1990-91 were £1,175 million. OFFER's estimate of receipts for 1991-92 will be published in due course. Levy receipts are shared between the companies which have contracts under the qualifying arrangements for the various non-fossil fuel obligation orders, in accordance with the terms of those contracts. The details of those contracts, and hence the share of the levy due to individual companies, are commercially confidential.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : The lifetimes of Nuclear Electric's Magnox stations are a commercial matter for the company. On 9 November 1989, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State announced to the House at column 1176 that it should be possible, subject to the views of the nuclear installations inspectorate, for the lifetime of at least some of the Magnox stations to be extended. It remains the Government's policy that capital approval will be given for such projects if a suitable safety and economic case can be made.
Sir Teddy Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will make a statement outlining the areas of his responsibility in which the EC will have competence following the implementation of agreements at Maastricht.
Mr. Morgan : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what proposals he has to encourage research and development into and the manufacture of commercial photovoltaic cell-based solar energy devices in the United Kingdom.
Mr. Moynihan : My Department is undertaking a two-year programme to assess the potential and opportunities for photovoltaic electricity generation in the United Kingdom, to identify any barriers to its use and to seek methods to overcome them.
Mr. Allen : To ask the Lord President of the Council how many hon. Members have (a) one full researcher pass, (b) more than one full researcher pass, (c) a place on the waiting list for a researcher pass and (d) a place on the waiting list and are Front Bench spokespersons.
(a) 168 hon. Members have one full researcher's pass ;
(b) 2 hon. Members have two full researcher's passes ;
(c) 11 hon. Members are on the waiting list for a full researcher's pass ;
(d) 4 Front Bench spokespersons are on the waiting list for a full researcher's pass ;
58 Members have places on the Research Assistant's list which are currently not filled.
Mr. Hardy : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what information he has on the number of incidents which have occurred in which dogs suspected to have been covered by the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 have actually been found to be or to be likely to be cross-breeds and therefore excluded from the provisions of the Act.
Mrs. Rumbold : Section 3 of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991, which creates criminal offences relating to dogs that are dangerously out of control in a public place, already applies to any dog, whether or not it is a cross-breed.
The fact that a dog is a cross-breed of one of those types of fighting dog specially controlled by section 1 of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 does not mean that it is necessarily excluded from those controls. Section 1 currently applies to any dog of the type known as the pit bull terrier, the Japanese tosa, the dogo Argentino and fila Braziliero. A cross-breed of any of these types of dog is also subject to the special controls of section 1 if it has the characteristics of these types of dogs. Ultimately it will be for the courts to decide in each case whether a particular dog is of the type covered by section 1 of the Act. In any proceedings where it is alleged by the prosecution that a dog is one to which section 1 applies, the onus is on the accused to prove the contrary. Central records are not kept of incidents in which dogs are involved but which do not result in prosecutions. Statistics for prosecutions under section 1 of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 are not yet available, but they will not, in any case, specify whether the dog involved was alleged to have been a cross-breed.
Mr. Terry Davis : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many young offenders were transferred from Hewell Grange to the young offenders institution at Thorn Cross during September 1991.
Dame Janet Fookes : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if his Department has considered an application for an exhibition relating to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to be displayed in the Upper Waiting Hall.
Mrs. Rumbold : I understand that, under procedures agreed by the Services Committee, arrangements have been made with the authorities of the House for the exhibition to be held in the Upper Waiting Hall from Monday 23 March to Friday 27 March 1992.
Sir Teddy Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement outlining the areas of his responsibility in which the EC will have competence following the implementation of agreements at Maastricht.
Mr. Kenneth Baker : The Community already has competence in relation to freedom of movement and residence of Community nationals and under the single market provisions of the treaty of Rome to aspects of certain other of my responsibilities, including some aspects of transborder data flow and the illicit drugs trade. Implementation of the Maastricht agreement will add the common list of countries whose nationals must be in possession of a visa when crossing the community's external borders ; measures related to a uniform format for visas ; measures on civil protection ; and aspects of drug dependence.
Mr. Kenneth Baker : I am pleased to be able to announce the appointment to the Animal Procedures Committee with effect from 1 January 1992 of Dr. A. J. Suckling, chief scientific officer of the RSPCA. I am grateful to Dr. Suckling for agreeing to serve on this committee.
Mr. Home Robertson : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he will reply to the letter sent to him on 21 August 1991 by the hon. Member for East Lothian concerning Mr. George Capelo.
Column 101Mr. Peter Lloyd : An investigation is continuing into Mr. Capelo's complaint about delays at immigration control at Edinburgh and Heathrow airports. The investigation is now nearing completion and I will write to the hon. Member with the outcome early in the new year.
Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what information he has received on the alleged massacre of civilians at Dalj on 1 August 1991, Lovinac on 13 August 1991, Banija on 16 August 1991, and near Podravska Slatina on 13 September 1991.
Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what information he has on the number of civilian and Red Cross ambulances that have been destroyed by the action of Serbian forces in Croatia.
Mr. Douglas Hogg : Conflicting claims and an absence of reliable independent sources mean that it is difficult to give precise figures for casualties in Croatia. Most estimates fall between 5,000 and 10, 000 deaths.
Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what information he has received on the number of hospitals, churches and cultural monuments which have been damaged or destroyed by federal army action in Croatia.
Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what information he has on the number of Red Cross medical personnel missing in Croatia ; and what does he know of their fate.
Mr. Douglas Hogg : We have publicly and strongly condemned the Yugoslav federal army's aggression against Dubrovnik, a city of no military significance. And at our initiative, a group of ambassadors have made strong representations to the Ministry of Defence in Belgrade.
Mr. Morgan : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what consultations he has had with the President of the European Commission concerning the facilities available within the Commission to foster multilateral agreements covering the provisions of the social chapter in the Netherlands Government draft of the proposed treaty of European union prepared for signature at the Maastricht summit ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Winnick : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will outline the provisions governing the competence of the European Court of Justice in considering the non- adherence of the United Kingdom to the social chapter of the proposed EC treaty at Maastricht.
Mr. Gregory : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when Her Majesty's Government intend to ratify the United Nations convention on the rights of the child ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Lennox-Boyd [pursuant to his answer, 2 December 1991] : The United Kingdom ratified the United Nations convention on the rights of the child on 16 December 1991. Progress is being made towards extending ratification to the Isle of Man, the Channel Islands and dependent territories.
A copy of the instrument of ratification has been placed in the Library of the House.
Mr. Fraser : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on what terms and conditions the United Kingdom Government support the employment of judges in Kenya ; on what criteria judges are seconded to that country ; and on what criteria judges seconded to serve in Kenya are reappointed or removed.
Column 103--are employed by the Government of Kenya on contract. They are not seconded. The Government of Kenya pays the salaries of judges employed under these arrangements and the ODA pays salary supplements and certain other benefits. Decisions to reappoint or terminate the appointments of judges are normally made following consultations between the Government of Kenya and Her Majesty's Government and taking account of a wide range of considerations.
Mr. Gould : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what communication his Department has received about the Local Authorities Credit Management Advisory Board ; and if he will make a statement.
The companies from whom the inquiries were received had responded to an advertisement in the Financial Times in September and were considering entering into contracts with LACMAB for the collection of debt owed to local authorities. These contracts involved them placing £250,000 on deposit with LACMAB for six months.
According to these companies, LACMAB had claimed to be known to my Department, and to be working under its auspices. Any such claim would be untrue. This organisation is not known to my Department, and has not carried out any work under its auspices. My officials also ascertained that the organisation had not previously been known to the Association of County Councils, Association of District Councils, Association of Metropolitan Authorities, Audit Commission or Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy. We have informed the firms from whom inquiries have been received accordingly.