HC Deb 27 January 1960 vol 616 cc153-4
25. Lieut.-Colonel Bromley-Davenport

asked the Minister of Transport how many persons have been killed during the past three years as a result of electrocution due to too close proximity to overhead cables on electrified railway lines; and whether he is satisfied that adequate steps are taken at the present time to put up sufficient warning notices indicating that it is dangerous to get within nine feet of such cables.

Mr. Marples

Five people were killed during the last three years. As regards the second part of the Question, I am satisfied that it is the policy of the Commission to erect adequate warning notices both to the public and to the railway staff where it is necessary.

Lieut.-Colonel Bromley-Davenport

Is my right hon. Friend aware that a boy was killed in my constituency, at Alderley Edge sidings, by one of these cables carrying 25,000 volts? Is he further aware that the Manchester coroner considered that British Railways had been lax in not putting up proper notices in this area? Will my right hon. Friend ensure that all such notices are put up giving adequate warning in the future?

Mr. Marples

That really was a very sad case of a child being killed but, of course, it would not have taken place if the child had not been trespassing, because he actually climbed a vehicle and got much too near the wire. I will look into the question of notices. The point is to try to stop children trespassing on the lines, which is very dangerous indeed. My hon. and gallant Friend may like to know that talks are to be given to all schools on this subject.