§ Mr. Macfarlane
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will define the factors his Department takes into account when assessing peak hours on all motorways in England.
§ Mr. Peter Bottomley
The Department, when estimating the benefits of road improvement schemes, calculates them separately for the traffic flows at peak times and other periods of the day. The peak time calculations are based on the predicted traffic flows during the 380 hours of the year when experience generally indicates the highest traffic levels are experienced: this represents the worst weekday morning and evening peaks of approximately 45 minutes duration. For urban roads the peak calculation covers 500 hours because the peak period is generally longer.