HC Deb 08 May 1968 vol 764 cc412-3
44. Mr. George Jeger

asked the Minister of Transport whether he will make it compulsory for heavy duty vehicles to have mud flaps fitted to their rear wings.

Mr. Bob Brown

Mudguarding must be tailored to the many different types of commercial vehicle and could not readily be specified in regulation; nor are we satisfied that the cost of compulsory fitting could be justified by accident savings.

Manufacturers have been asked to take account, when designing vehicles, of recommendations on spray control made by the Road Research Laboratory.

Mr. Jeger

Is the Parliamentary Secretary aware of the hazards and great danger of windscreens being obscured by dollops of mud when following heavy duty vehicles, the wheels of which are high off the ground?

Mr. Brown

I assure my hon. Friend that we are well aware of this problem. However, only a very small proportion of the total number of accidents is directly due to mud on windscreens, although the number of accidents in which this is a contributory factor is not yet known.

Mr. Geoffrey Wilson

Would the hon. Gentleman confirm that the Road Research Laboratory is doubtful whether mud flaps are effective?

Mr. Brown

The Road Research Laboratory has conducted long-term research into this matter.

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