§ MR. JOHN ELLIS (Nottinghamshire, Rushcliffe)
I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether he will state the steps taken by his Department to carry out The Railway Employment (Prevention of Accidents) Act, 1900, particularly in respect of the making of rules under Section 1, the inspection of railways under Section 13, and the making of inquiries and experiments under Section 15.
§ THE PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD OF TRADE (Mr. GERALD BALFOUR,) Leeds, Central
1. Under the Act in question rules have been made by the Board of Trade dealing with the following matters. The labelling of wagons; the movement of wagons by propping, and tow-roping; the provision of power brakes on engines; the lighting of stations or sidings where shunting operations are frequently carried on after dark; the protection of point-rods and signal wires and the position of ground levers working points; the protection of gauge glasses; the arrangement of tool boxes and water gauges on engines; the provision of brake-vans or other suitable vehicles for trains working upon running lines beyond station limits the protection of men engaged in relaying or repairing permanent way. All these rules came into operation as Statutory Rules on the 8th August last. The amended rule has also been prepared respecting the provision of either side brake levers, such rule being drawn on lines indicated by the Court of the Railway and Canal Commission when 177 the subject was before them last year, The period within which objectors may require the reference of this rule before it is finally made to the Railway and Canal Commissioners will expire on the 20th April. (2.) Local inquiries into the conditions of working on various railways were held in the course of framing these rules, and since August last inspection has been made by the Board's officers of forty-six stations and yards which were represented to the Board as being inadequately lighted, in contravention of the rule on that subject. I am glad to say that all the improvements in lighting which were regarded by the Board's officers as essential in these cases have been or are being carried out by the railway companies concerned. (3.) The Board have not yet considered it necessary to make experiments under Section 15 of the Act, and the position in this matter is still that explained in my answer to the hon. Member on the 12th May last.†