§ Mr. Iain Mills
asked the Secretary of State for Transport when he intends to publish the report of the interdepartmental working party on road traffic law.
§ Mr. Fowler
My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary and I have published the report today. Copies have been placed in the Library and in the Vote Office. We welcome the report and generally accept its recommendations. The opportunity has already been taken to introduce legislation on the points system in the Transport Bill which is now before Parliament. The proposed extension of the fixed penalty system to the less serious moving traffic offences will allow substantial savings of time for the police and courts. The recommendations on the existing fixed penalty system which applies mainly to parked vehicles should also produce much needed improvement. We do not, however, accept the recommendation for the compulsory carrying of driving licences. We propose instead to adopt 119W the alternative course of providing that fixed penalty treatment should not be available for a driver stopped for a moving traffic offence if he is unable to produce his licence. We would welcome comment on the proposal that, where a person does not duly respond to a fixed penalty notice or the ensuing notice to owner either by paying the penalty or denying liability, the penalty should be treated as a fine imposed on conviction and be recoverable without the need for a court hearing.