HC Deb 09 June 1969 vol 784 cc936-7
38. Mr. Ronald Bell

asked the Minister of Transport whether he will alter the regulations governing the use of horns by motor vehicles so as to prohibit the use of two-tone horns by the police, fire and ambulance services and restore the use of bells by drivers in the emergency services.

Mr. Bob Brown

No, Sir. Experience has shown that in modern traffic a two-tone horn is more effective than a bell in clearing the way for emergency vehicles.

Mr. Bell

Must we always copy the worst features of other countries? Is the hon. Gentleman really satisfied with this competition in noise he has described? Would it not be better if his Ministry were to press forward far more vigorously in reducing general noise of urban traffic so that some less strident signal would be adequate for emergency vehicles?

Mr. Brown

The hon. and learned Gentleman must realise that the advent of the trafficator has meant that people do not need to have their windows wound down so often in order to give hand signals. In addition, more motorists are listening to radios, which makes it much more difficult to hear warning signals.