§ Mr. O'Neill
asked the Secretary of State for Defence when and where an accident to a military convoy took place in Wiltshire on 10 January; what were the points of departure and destination of and the route taken by the convoy; what vehicles were involved; what materials were being carried; on whose orders the convoy was sent; whether the police were consulted before departure; when the police were informed of the incident; when police arrived on the scene; under what authority armed troops cordoned off areas before their arrival; what area was cordoned off; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Stanley
A military convoy was involved in a road traffic accident near West Dean in Wiltshire on Saturday, 10 January. It was operating under Ministry of Defence command and control procedures.
I understand that the police were informed immediately of the incident; and that the first police officers arrived at the scene within about five minutes. Traffic diversions were established by the police. In addition, Ministry of Defence personnel assisted the police in restricting access to the area immediately around the accident site to ensure the security of the cargo and to allow recovery operations to continue unhindered. For security reasons, it is not our practice to discuss the make-up of military convoys or the materials carried, or to disclose their routes.