§ 23. Mr. Costain
asked the Minister of Transport what facilities are available in London and the Home Counties for private motorists to have the use of prepared surfaces similar to those used by the Metropolitan Police and London Transport to train drivers to control skidding vehicles.
§ Mr. Costain
Is my hon. Friend aware that that reply will bring much satisfaction? As the Department is keen on this sort of thing, would he approach the Minister of Aviation and the Secretary of State for Air to inquire whether some of the unused runways could be used for this purpose?
§ Mr. Hay
My right hon. Friend has no statutory power to run things of this kind. I think I should tell the House that some years ago a county police force in fact made use of a disused airfield for skid pan purposes but the demand was so great and claims on police manpower were so heavy that reluctantly the experiment had to be abandoned. We will do all we can to encourage better training in avoiding skids.
§ Mr. Mellish
Can the hon. Gentleman arrange with the Prime Minister to give examples and lessons in this?
§ 26. Mr. E. Johnson
asked the Minister of Transport how many proposals he has received from local authorities for building skid pans for giving skid training to motorists; in how many such cases he has been asked to recommend the Minister of Housing and Local Government and Minister for Welsh Affairs to grant loan sanction for this purpose; and what has been his reply.
§ Mr. Johnson
While welcoming my hon. Friend's Answer to that, may I ask if he would not agree that, in view of the fact that the Road Research Laboratory said 50,000 accidents were caused through skidding in 1959, it is most desirable to give every possible encouragement to local authorities or to other organisations which are trying to provide these facilities which are very rarely available to the average motorist?
§ Mr. P. Williams
Would my hon. Friend not agree that there is some danger in making everyone a perfectionist in skidding and that it might be better, first, to save money and, secondly, to drive a bit slower?