§ MR. CHANNING (Northamptonshire, E.)
To ask the President of the Local Government Board whether, having regard to the increasing number of accidents arising from excessive speed and reckless driving of motor-cars and cycles, and to the habitual violation of the legal speed limits, he will take immediate steps to strengthen the law and to secure its effective enforcement.
THE SECRETARY TO THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT BOARD (Mr. GRANT LAWSON,) Yorkshire, N.R., Thirsk
In the unavoidable absence of my right hon. friend may I be permitted to read his reply?—I have seen with much regret the reports of several recent accidents caused by motor-cars and motor-cycles. Reckless and inconsiderate driving should certainly be stopped, and I may point out that under the Motor-Car Act, 1903, it is an offence to drive a motor-car in a public highway recklessly or negligently or at a speed or in a manner which is dangerous to the public. Offences under the Act are punishable by fine and suspension of licence, and in the case of a second or subsequent offence by imprisonment, and I should hope that magistrates will impose penalties sufficiently deterrent to put an end to the† See (4) Debates, cxliii., 791.921 evil, without its being necessary to resort to further legislation on the subject.
§ MR. CHANNING
Do I understand that the Local Government Board are not prepared to consider at present questions of further legislation and stronger regulations? It seems to me they are imperatively demanded.
§ MR. CATHOART WASON (Orkney and Shetland)
May I ask whether the hon. Gentleman will take steps to reconsider the circular issued by the Local Government Board directly taking away the power of local authorities to regulate traffic in their own district?