HC Deb 21 April 1948 vol 449 cc1779-80
2. Mr. Cooper

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Civil Aviation why the new minimum standards of visibility imposed at London Airport are maintained in face of the strong representations made by operating companies to operate when the conditions are less favourable than the present minima permit.

Mr. Lindgren

In view of these representations, my noble Friend has sought the advice of the Air Safety Board. I am, therefore, not in a position to make a statement pending the result of the review that is now being undertaken.

Mr. Cooper

Does not my hon. Friend agree that it is advisable, in such circumstances as this, to seek consultation with the air line operators concerned, so as not to impose unnecessary minimum restrictions which would put the London Airport out of use in conditions which really are not unsafe?

Mr. Lindgren

Yes, Sir, and in addition to the operators, there should be consultation with organisations such as B.A.L.P.A., as representative of those who fly the aircraft.

Mr. Scollan

Does not the hon. Gentleman think it advisable that there should be a very definite cloud ceiling, and not, in effect, to leave it to the discretion of anybody, but to have a standard, and keep it, instead of varying it from time to time?

Mr. Lindgren

The answer is not so simple as that. There is a considerable weight of responsibility on the pilot for the safety of his aircraft.