HC Deb 24 April 1989 vol 151 cc405-6W
Mr. Alton

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what statutory provision is made for the availability of oxygen and respiration equipment at football league and cup fixtures; what requirement there is to provide a contingency plan in the event of an emergency; how often safety arrangements are required to be reviewed; and who is responsible for enforcing such regulations.

Mr. John Patten

The Safety of Sports Grounds Act 1975 requires the operator of a sports ground designated under the Act to apply for a safety certificate from the local authority. Safety certificates, which are issued under the 1975 Act, contain terms and conditions which are necessary or expedient to secure reasonable safety at the ground in question when it is in use. They may include requirements for contingency planning, training and safety reviews.

The terms and conditions of a safety certificate and their enforcement are the responsibility of the issuing local authority.

Mr. Madden

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what reports he has received about assaults on police officers and emergency service personnel on duty at Hillsborough on Saturday 15 April.

Mr. John Patten

I am informed by the chief constable that information about any assaults on police officers has not yet been collated. The chief fire officer informs me that so far none of his staff has reported any assault. The chief ambulance officer reports that, so far, three staff have reported an assault but that the debriefing of his staff is not yet complete.

Mr. Alton

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will call for a report from the chief constable of South Yorkshire as to what arrangements are being made to return items belonging to deceased Hillsborough victims to their relatives.

Mr. Hurd

I understand from the chief constable of the West Midlands police, who is conducting the police inquiry into the Hillsborough tragedy, that the items, which it is thought may play an important part in the investigation, are being held temporarily. The police are conscious of the need to return these personal items as quickly as possible to the relatives of the deceased and are proceeding urgently with the investigation.