My Lords, I rise to ask His Majesty's Government what excuse there is for regulating the head lights of motor-ears under the Defence of the Realm Act; and, since the present Order is clearly illegal and ultra vires, whether it will be at once withdrawn.
§ VISCOUNT SANDHURST
My Lords, Defence of the Realm Regulation No. 11 empowers the Secretary of State to make Orders regulating the lights to be carried by all vehicles, or by the vehicles of any specified class or description. The Regulation remains in force until the termination of the war, and the Order to which the noble Earl refers appears to be intra vires. I understand that there is reason to believe that it is generally agreed by motorists as well as by others that brilliant and dazzling head lights are a source of danger at all times, and especially under the conditions now prevailing in consequence of the war, and it is very desirable in the interests of public safety that the Home Secretary's Orders, though provisional in character, should be maintained in force until a permanent measure can be settled. I understand that this matter will come within the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Ways and Communications.