HC Deb 14 February 1962 vol 653 c1296
15. Mr. Cleaver

asked the Minister of Transport whether he proposes to make a regulation for the compulsory use of dipped headlights; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Marples

Clause 13 of the Road Traffic Bill, which is now before the House, contains provisions which would enable me to make regulations governing the use of headlamps, but it is too early to say how these powers should be used.

General guidance on using dipped headlamps is given in the Highway Code. Rule 50 says, Use dipped headlights at night in built-up areas, unless the street lighting is good.

Mr. Cleaver

Would my right hon. Friend bear in mind that 80 million out of 125 million motorists in the world already have to do this Is he aware that the Lord Mayor of Birmingham has convened a conference of interested parties, including the police, with a view to staging a week in the city when motorists will be asked to dip their headlights? Will he take an interest in this and support it?

Mr. Marples

I shall certainly take an interest in it, and I should be glad to hear from my hon. Friend the conclusions arrived at at the Birmingham conference, but there are many different schools of thought on this question. I know that Birmingham is one of the foremost towns in the country in looking after roads and road traffic. I shall be very interested to hear the conclusions of the conference.

Mr. Paget

Can the right hon. Gentleman tell us when the central screen down M.1 will be completed so that we can use headlights there in a non-lit area?

Mr. Marples

Perhaps the hon. and learned Member will put that question on the Order Paper.