§ Mr. Marten
asked the Secretary of State for Defence if, in view of the giant tankers now entering British waters, he is satisfied with the accuracy of Admiralty charts; and if he will make a statement.
§ Dr. David Owen
The very rapid increase in the size and draught of tankers has necessitated new and more detailed surveys, particularly of shallow waters in the Straits of Dover and the North Sea.291W
The major part of the Navy's hydrographic potential is now deployed on resurvey work which will benefit the new large tankers. For the past three years considerable survey work has been concentrated on this task. In the North Sea area we share the survey work with other countries in the North Sea Hydrographic Commission.
The first and most urgent phase of the re-surveys will be complete by mid-1969.
I am satisfied that this important and demanding task is being pressed forward with all urgency.