§ Mr. Hutchinson
asked the Minister of Fuel and Power if he is aware that excessive quantities of foreign matter are still found to be mixed with supplies of house coal and coke sold to the public; and what steps he proposes to take to ensure that such foreign substances are extracted from supplies of domestic fuel offered for sale to the public.
Major Lloyd George
Some deterioration in the quality of domestic fuel is inevitable in war-time, and is due in the main to shortage of labour for manning picking belts at the collieries, and for screening and picking coal at distributors' depots. These difficulties are aggravated by the necessity of utilising all available grades of fuel. On the whole, however, I am satisfied that the quality of domestic fuel is being reasonably well maintained. 505W My regional officers are keeping close watch on the position, and have been instructed to investigate carefully all complaints referred to them in order that remedial action may be taken.