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Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will list the recommendations made by the Health and Safety Executive since 1997 which should have been implemented to date; what steps have been taken to ensure
22 May 2002 : Column 346W
these recommendations will be implemented; when these recommendations are likely to be implemented; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) do not make recommendations to Ministers on railway safety matters, this is the responsibility of the Health and Safety Commission. Recommendations made by the Commission since 1997 were that the Secretary of State make regulations on train protection and Mark 1 rolling stock (1998), regulations to extend the scope of train operators' safety cases and transfer responsibility for the acceptance of safety cases from Railtrack to the Health and Safety Executive (2000) and regulations to make clear that safety cases cover escape from trains as well as organised evacuation in an emergency (2001) implementing a recommendation from Lord Cullen's part 1 report into the Ladbroke Grove train accident. All of these regulations have been made.
Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what evidence he has collated on UK airports as to the levying of differential handling charges for disabled travellers; and if he will take steps to prevent this practice. 
Mr. Jamieson: There is general agreement across airports and airlines that the additional costs incurred in providing assistance to disabled passengers should not be passed on to those passengers. That principle will be reflected in a UK Code of Practice on air travel for disabled people that the Department is planning to publish this summer. Compliance with that Code will be on a voluntary basis, but we have said that we will take powers to place the Code on a statutory basis should the voluntary approach prove ineffective.
Additionally, many UK airlines and airports have signed the European Air Passenger Rights Charter, which was launched on 14 February and which includes a similar commitment. The Charter covers a range of non-legally binding commitments to deliver defined standards of service to air travellers.
The Charter was developed by European airlines and airports following extensive discussion with representatives of air travellers; the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC), representing European Governments; and the European Commission. My Department is also involved in discussions through the European Civil Aviation Conference to look at the mechanisms which have been established at different airports across Europe to cover the costs of assisting disabled passengers and to develop guidance on workable models for providing assistance and covering the costs on an equitable basis.
Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if Humber Pilots Limited were consulted in the preparation of the document The New Humber Pilotage Service. 
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Mr. Jamieson: The paper was prepared following extensive representations from and on behalf of former Humber pilots, and several meetings with them and officers of Humber Pilots Ltd. The paper is an account of the Department's independent assessment of the new pilotage arrangementsit was not prepared to represent the views of the former pilots or other parties, although those that were expressed to the Department are fully reflected in the concerns that the paper discusses.
Mr. Gale: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what steps he is taking to secure the restitution of normal freight services using the Channel Tunnel; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson [holding answer 21 May 2002]: The Government continues to press the French Government at the highest levels to provide adequate policing resources at Fréthun to support the anti-intrusion measures already being installed by SNCF in order to address the disruption to channel tunnel services caused by would-be illegal immigrants. We welcome the additional resources that have already been deployed. The Government also welcomes the recent announcement by the French Government of proposals to further strengthen the anti-intrusion measures at Fréthun, and the personal assurance from the new Interior Minister of his commitment to maintain policing resources.
Mr. Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what assessment he has made of the effect of Regulation (EC) 417/2002 (OJ L64, 7/3/02), on the sales of oil tankers from the EU fleet to countries not covered by the regulation; and if he will make a statement. 
Last year the International Maritime Organization (IMO) agreed to accelerate the phasing in of double hull tankers so that by 2017 single hull tankers will no longer be in service anywhere in the world. Under the IMO agreement states may bring this deadline forward slightly and EU member states have chosen this option. Regulation 417/2002 provides that the final deadline by which a vessel flying an EU flag or using an EU port must be fitted with a double hull is 2015 rather than 2017.
Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions how much (a) private capital and (b) public money was spent on transport during the first year of the 10-year plan. 
Mr. Byers: During the first year of the 10-year plan for Transport (200102), provisional figures indicate that around £6,550 million of public money was spent on transport, almost £500 million more than was envisaged in the published plan.
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My Department is currently collecting data on private sector spending on transport in 200102 and an estimate of this should be included in the first year report on the 10-year plan when it is published in July.
Mr. Jamieson: As part of the process leading up to the proposed air transport White Paper we expect to publish a series of regional consultation documents on airports and air services in early summer. When the consultation has been completed we will analyse the responses before taking decisions on the policies for the new White Paper, which we aim to publish towards the end of the year.
Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what the latest estimated date is for the handover of the operation of the London underground to the Mayor of London; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: The handover will happen as soon as possible after completion of the PPP contracts. The contracts will take effect provided the Health and Safety Executive approve London Underground's Railway Safety Case.
Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what incentives he proposes for rail safety in the scheme for a company limited by guarantee to take over the railways. 
Mr. Byers: Discussions are continuing on Network Rail's incentive proposals. Network Rail has made clear that if it succeeds in becoming network operator its work will be supported by an incentive scheme based on system-wide safety and performance measures.
Mr. Steen: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what plans he has to hold discussions with the Strategic Rail Authority concerning the re-routing of the main railway line between Paddington and Penzance away from the sea wall down the Exe Estuary and the coast at Dawlish and Teignmouth; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions (1) if he will list the consultants and external advisers used by the Government in the last year on railway matters; 
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Mr. Byers: The consultants and external advisers, used by the Government in the last year on railway and underground matters, are as listed in the reply which I gave to the right hon. Member on 22 November 2001, Official Report, column 390W, except that: Finsbury Ltd., Herbert Smith, Linklaters and Alliance, Partnerships UK and Professor Andrew Evans should be added to that list; AEA Technology Rail, AON, Booz Allen and Hamilton, Deloitte and Touche and NERA should be deleted from it; and "Oscar Faber" should be altered to "Faber Maunsell".
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions how many animals have been (a) killed, (b) injured and (c) retrieved from railway lines in each year since 1997; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: The Health and Safety Executive's HM Railway Inspectorate only collect statistics on the number of trains which run into animals. Details are contained in the table. Further information may be found in HM Chief Inspector of Railways annual reports on railway safety, copies of which are in both House Libraries.
|Number of trains|
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions how many incidents of motor vehicles colliding with trains on railway lines there were in each year since 1997; in which locations; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: Information held by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) on the number of incidents where trains have collided with motor vehicles on railway lines (not at level crossings) since 1977 is contained in the table. This information is based on notifications the HSE has received from railway operators under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations, 1995 (RIDDOR).
|3 February 1997||Ascott under Wychwood|
|15 March 1997||Morton Garage|
|8 June 1997||Burbage|
|9 September 1998||Thornton|
|16 November 1998||Slateford|
|22 January 1999||Firbeck|
|29 July 1999||Holton-Le-Moor|
|17 November 1999||Northumberland Park|
|18 August 1999||Drax Branch Junction|
|14 September 1999||Aberdeen|
|26 February 2000||Kiveton Bridge|
|20 August 2000||Micklefield|
|28 February 2001||Great Heck|
22 May 2002 : Column 350W
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions when the final report into the rail accident at Hatfield in October 2000 was originally planned to be published; when it will be published; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: The Health and Safety Executive's final report will be published after the British Transport Police investigation and any possible criminal prosecutions arising from it have been completed. Safety critical information from the investigation has already been made available to the industry.
Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what the extent is of the legal relationship between the Strategic Rail Authority and Network Rail; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: The Strategic Rail Authority is meeting the bid team's costs in order to ensure that there is at least one viable bidder for Railtrack plc. There is no other legal relationship between the SRA and Network Rail.
Tom Brake: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions, pursuant to his oral answer of 13 May 2002, Official Report, column 508, on rail safety, if he will place in the Library a copy of the letter sent to the chairman of the Health and Safety Commission on 1 May asking him to report by the end of May on the progress made on Cullen's recommendations to which he refers in the Library; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Byers [holding answer 21 May 2002]: Normally the letter would be exempt from publication, however as I referred to it during my statement to the House on 13 May, I have placed a copy in the Libraries. I will also place a copy of the Health and Safety Commission's response when it is received.
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