HC Deb 01 December 1965 vol 721 cc1405-6
44. Miss Quennell

asked the Minister of Transport if he will introduce automatic early-warning systems on motorways and' trunk roads to warn motorists of hazards ahead in conditions of bad visibility.

Mr. Tom Fraser

There is already a remote controlled warning system on 26 miles of M.5. As I said on 24th November, I am studying signalling systems to see what permanent arrangements we should adopt for the motorways.

Miss Quennell

Does not the right hon. Gentleman realise that my Question is not directed solely to motorways, which, after all, carry a relatively small proportion of the national traffic? Would he also be prepared to consider a review in the light of the needs of our trunk road system generally?

Mr. Fraser

I am bound to say that I had thought that it was generally appreciated that we had to deal with the motorways problem first. Certainly the great public concern which has been expressed has been about motorways. Even the hon. Lady's Question dealt with motorways and trunk roads. I think that we should go ahead with the experiment we are having on the motorways.

Sir M. Redmayne

Bearing in mind that particularly on the A.1 there are alternate stretches of motorway and trunk road, and therefore special dangers arise, will the Minister see whether these warning signs can be provided over the whole length of such roads?

Mr. Fraser

I appreciate the need to do a great many things, but I think even the right hon. Gentleman will appreciate that to get warning signs at one mile intervals along all our motorways before Christmas is a mammoth task. If there is so much to be done to make our roads safer, it is a great pity that the right hon. Gentleman and his right hon. Friends did so little about it for so many years.