§ 40. Mr. Ronald Bell
asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation what steps he is taking to fill in gaps in the centre islands of dual carriageway roads, so as to prevent vehicles from making right turns; whether he is aware that some motorists park their vehicles on dual carriageways; and if he will make a statement on this practice.
§ Mr. Watkinson
It is my Department's policy to see that as few gaps as practicable are left in the central reservation of dual carriageways, and my powers under Section 45 of the Road Traffic Act, 1956 are being used to give effect to this on existing roads as opportunity offers.
I am aware that some motorists park their vehicles on dual carriageways. Highway authorities have powers to control such parking where they consider it necessary to do so.
§ Mr. Bell
In spite of the highly satisfactory nature of that Answer, may I ask whether my right hon. Friend is aware that there still seem to be an enormous number of gaps in the centre islands of dual carriageway roads, that right turning is common and that this is a dangerous practice, as is also that of using the nearside lane of the dual carriageway for parking, which is also extremely common? Would my right hon. Friend initiate some effective action of enforcement, which would probably involve using police sent out especially to stop parking in near-side lanes?
§ Mr. Watkinson
I am very sympathetic to what my hon. Friend has said because it is a dangerous practice and it restricts road space, and thus greatly impedes traffic. One of the difficulties is to discover how we can get better enforcement without making more regulations, which I am not very willing to do. If my hon. Friend has any ideas about how we could get a tighter and better implementation, avoiding right-hand turning and stopping parking in the wrong place, and will let me have them, I will look at them with pleasure.