HC Deb 18 May 1943 vol 389 cc946-7W
Mr. Granville

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of War Transport whether he will consider introducing legislation to place third party insurance upon the vehicle involved in an accident, irrespective of who the driver may he and the circumstances in which he is driving, for the creation of a pooled fund from the insurance companies for cases where no policy exists or where the driver is untraced and for entitling representatives of those killed to compensation up to a limited amount without having to give proof of negligence or fault?

Mr. Noel-Baker

When war broke out legislation was being prepared to implement the report of the Committee on Compulsory Insurance. As regards the first and second parts of the Question, the proposals of the Committee, if adopted, would ensure that an injured third party should not lose his claim to compensation by reason of a breach of the permitted conditions in an insurance policy relating to the driving or use of a vehicle. It was recommended by the Committee that such claims, and those where no insurance exists, should be met by a central fund. As regards injury by a vehicle which cannot be traced, however, the Committee pointed out that in such a case it is impossible to establish a case against anyone, and considered that the grant of a right of claim against the central fund would lead to abuses which would render such a course unsuitable. I am afraid that it is not practicable to proceed with the legislation at the present time, but the question of legislating when circumstances permit is kept constantly in mind.

Station Friday April 23rd Saturday April 24th Sunday April 25th Monday April 26th
No. of trains Seats No. of trains Seats No. of trains Seats No. of trains Seats
Paddington 38 24,459 41 27,000 19 12,194 42 27,796
Euston 32 19,569 24 14,760 16 9,691 32 19,696
King's Cross 21 10,367 17 10,415 10 4,240 18 9,492
Waterloo 21 13,800 19 13,250 8 5,300 20 13,000
112 68,195 101 65,445 53 31,425 112 69,984

It has not been possible to ascertain the number of passengers travelling by each of these trains. This would involve an investigation at every point at which each train stopped. Most of them left London full and with passengers standing in both classes, though a few had seats available. More passengers joined these trains at intermediate stops, and they became very,crowded. Passenger traffic was generally normal on Easter Sunday, though a few trains were heavily loaded.