HL Deb 07 July 1966 vol 275 cc1179-80

3.7 p.m.


My Lords, I beg leave to ask the Question which stands in my name on the Order Paper.

[The Question was as follows:

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether plans have been made for the improvement of the A.9 road between Perth and Inverness; and, if so, when it is expected that the improvements will be completed.]


My Lords, plans have been made, and powers obtained, for a number of improvements, involving diversions, in Perthshire. Two of these schemes will probably be started this year; but others will have to await the completion of works needed to improve trunk roads in the industrial belt.


My Lords, in thanking the noble Lord for that reply, may I ask him whether he is aware that, owing to the vastly increased tourist traffic in the summer and during the skiing season in winter, this road is loaded almost to capacity? May I further ask him whether the accident rate on this road is not abnormally high?


My Lords, as I know from personal experience, travelling on this road at this time of the year, and for the next two months or so, can be a little frustrating, but fortunately it does not go beyond that. Traffic statistics show considerable leeway before the overcrowding of the road brings about a situation which would compel immediate action. It is being kept further back in the lists, because in the central belts the problem has already become much more acute than on this road. In this situation, where we cannot spend on roads all the money we should like to at any given time, we must work according to priorities.


My Lords, can the noble Lord say whether this road or any part of it is subject to the 50 miles an hour limit during the busy season, and. if not, whether he would contemplate applying it?


My Lords, I think that is another question; but, speaking from my recollection of that road—and perhaps this is why the question was asked—there are very few places on which one can travel for any distance at 50 miles an hour.

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