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Outer Space: Use of Satellites

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

4 Nov 1999 : Column WA105

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean: The deployment and usage of satellites is a matter for those nations who own them. As stated in the Written Answer by Lord Gilbert on 13 May 1998 (Col. WA 125), Article 1 of the Outer Space Treaty sets out the right of all states to explore and use outer space in accordance with international law. Nothing in Article 1 confines such use to non-military activities.

Acrophobia

Lord Norton of Louth asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What proportion of the population is believed to suffer from acrophobia; and to what extent the needs of those suffering from acrophobia are taken into account in the design of public buildings. [HL4300]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (Lord Whitty): The Department of Health do not collect statistics on the number of people suffering from acrophobia, so I regret that I cannot provide this information.

The design of new buildings in England and Wales is covered by the Building Regulations 1991. They are applicable to public buildings except those belonging to statutory undertakers and to the Crown. There are no provisions made specifically for the benefit of those suffering from acrophobia. However, the regulations require that any hazards such as stairs, ramps, balconies, and any roof to which people have access, should be protected by barriers where it is necessary to protect people from falling. These may provide a measure of security for sufferers of acrophobia.

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A.303, Stonehenge

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How the Highways Agency has spent £794,945 on the design of the Stonehenge part of the scheme for the A.303--Berwick Down road scheme, seeing there is no publicly agreed proposal for this; and how is the Stonehenge part of the scheme defined (HC Deb., 19 October, WA 427). [HL4374]

Lord Whitty: The figure of £794,945 is the cost of studies, surveys and other work over a period of more than three years, covering a wide range of route and tunnel solutions. Also included is the cost of work necessitated by the Planning Conference and subsequent work done in preparation for the Roads Review. The A.303 Stonehenge scheme extends from Berwick Down up to and including Countess Roundabout at Amesbury.

M.4: Car Occupancy

The Marquess of Ailesbury asked Her Majesty's Government:

    In what percentage of cars which enter London on the M.4 is the driver unaccompanied. [HL4200]

Lord Whitty: Video data of the traffic using the M.4 between Junction 3 and the elevated section has been analysed by the Transport Research Laboratory to assess vehicle occupancy.

The results show that on average, 80 per cent of cars entering London via the M.4 appear to contain only the driver.

Bus Fare Evasion: Prosecutions

The Earl of Clancarty asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How many prosecutions have been brought per annum by London Transport for bus ticket irregularities since 1981.[HL 4267]

Lord Whitty: These are operational matters for London Regional Transport. The table below provided by London Regional Transport gives details of prosecutions brought since 1991 and in each case refers to the financial year--i.e. 1 April to 31 March inclusive.

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Year1991/921992/931993/941994/951995/961996/971997/981998/99
Cases Brought3,5933,4052,2893,3084,2975,5358,95011,101
Dismissed3756344247426679
Withdrawn660463389649425560805961
Successful Cases2,8962,8861,8662,6173,8254,9338,07910,061

Statistics relating to cases from 1981 to 1991 are not readily available and could only be provided at a disproportionate cost.




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