HC Deb 25 January 1955 vol 536 cc19-20W
97. Mr. Harold Davies

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation if he will make a national inquiry into the problems and dislocation caused by heavy snowfalls in the winter seasons; and whether he will suggest, and be prepared to subsidise, up-to-date equipment for snow clearing in the areas most likely to be affected during the winter.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

So far as roads are concerned I have asked for a report from my Divisional Road Engineers on the situation as revealed by the recent heavy snows. The hon. Member will no doubt be aware that responsibility, except on trunk roads, lies with the local highway authorities, who also act as agents for me on trunk roads. In the latter case I provide the equipment, of which I also hold a reserve, and I can and do lend this equipment to them in respect of their own responsibilities.

Railways are the responsibility of the British Transport Commission, which informs me that blockages from snow occur at relatively few places and can usually be quickly dispersed with existing equipment.

Mr. John Hall

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation if he will give guidance to transport undertakings and local authorities on the action they should take to prevent the disorganisation of traffic which results each year from the first fall of snow.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter