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""trailer" means a vehicle drawn by a motor vehicle;"

The noble Viscount said: In moving Amendment No. 29 I shall speak also to Amendment No. 30 standing in my name. The amendments are somewhat similar to Amendment No. 1, on which I was shouted down by my noble friend on the Front Bench. That drew attention to the financial gains to be made from

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the salvage of trailers and caravans. Amendment No. 29 seeks to define the word "trailer" and Amendment No. 30 seeks to add the words "trailer or caravan" to Clause 16.

As I said when speaking to Amendment No. 1, there is a lucrative trade in the parts of trailers and caravans. For that reason I want to include these provisions on the face of the Bill, notwithstanding the fact that I know what the Minister's reply will be in advance. I beg to move.

Viscount Astor: I seem to have become the trailer expert on this side of the House for this stage of the Bill. There may be a requirement for a definition of the word "trailer", but Amendment No. 29 appears to be entirely in the wrong place. It refers to the part dealing with roads, and trailers do not really have anything to do with roads. I do not understand how that would work. It does not appear to make any sense at all, but maybe I have misunderstood.

However, I believe that Amendment No. 30 raises an issue on which I have one question for the Minister. Should the Secretary of State decide to add trailers, as we discussed on an earlier amendment, it seems to me that there would have to be a change to Clause 8(1), which would need to refer to the destruction of motor vehicles or trailers. If it were to be inserted there, would we require a definition of "trailers"? If so, would Clause 16, where the noble Viscount, Lord Simon, has, in my view, rightly inserted it, be the place for such a definition? However, I do not believe that this is the right definition. Perhaps the Minister will consider that between now and Report stage.

Lord Bassam of Brighton: I was going to try to consider the matter between now and the time at which a response is provided, but I shall do my best with what I have.

The effect of these amendments will be to define trailers and to bring trailers and caravans within the description of "written-off vehicle". As the noble

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Viscount, Lord Simon, said, this is similar to the amendment discussed earlier that will bring trailers and caravans within the scope of Part 1 of the Bill. Let us remind ourselves what this part is trying to achieve. Part 1 is concerned with preventing "ringing", where the identity of a stolen vehicle is disguised with that of a written-off vehicle, and consequently an insurance fraud is committed. We have had representations from the police to suggest that these are serious problems, as I said earlier, but ones that mainly apply to motor vehicles. We have not had the same representations that suggest that this problem exists in relation to trailers and caravans.

We do not want to impose an undue burden on business by widening the scope of the Bill to areas where we do not believe that the problem is as significant. This is not something on which we have consulted the police or industry. For that reason, I do not believe that we want to introduce legislation of this sort and certainly we would not want to introduce it until we had some detailed consultation.

The noble Viscount, Lord Astor, raises an issue to which I shall not be able to provide a response this evening but I shall try to do so before we reach Report stage.

I trust that my noble friend Lord Simon will be able to withdraw his amendment.

Viscount Simon: I thank my noble friend for his explanation. I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

[Amendment No. 30 not moved.]

Clause 16 agreed to.

Lord Burlison: My Lords, I beg to move that the House do now resume.

Moved accordingly, and, on Question, Motion agreed to.

House resumed.

        House adjourned at ten minutes before ten o'clock.


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