HC Deb 30 March 1955 vol 539 cc362-3
27. Major Anstruther-Gray

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation whether his attention has been drawn to the fact that the main road over Soutra has been obstructed by snow long after other roads have been cleared; and whether he will consider assisting local authorities in dealing with the problem of snow clearance in particularly difficult stretches of busy main roads.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

Conditions on this road were exceptionally severe, and the ice which formed had to be broken by compressors and an ice-breaking machine. My information is that the road was blocked for two days but was then opened to single-line traffic, double-line traffic being restored 11 days later. As this road is a trunk road, I provide the necessary snow-clearing equipment and pay the full cost. On classified roads the responsibility for snow clearing rests on the local highway authority, but all equipment available is used to the best advantage.

Major Anstruther-Gray

Arising out of that reply, for which I thank my right hon. Friend, may we take it that in future snow clearance over Soutra Hill will be improved?

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

As my hon. and gallant Friend, who knows the place well, realises, this hill stands high and faces north, and therefore does sometimes provide very difficult problems indeed, but we are taking steps to see that, in general, rather more apparatus than was available last year will be available in the future.