§ Mr. McLeish
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland (1) if he will make a statement about Operation Scotcheck carried out in Scotland on 13 November; what was the role of(a) his Department and (b) the Health and Safety Executive; and whether any information obtained from the drivers has been passed to the fraud sections of the Department of Employment;
(2) if he will make a statement about his Department's involvement in operation Scotcheck carried out in Scotland on 13 November;
(3) what approval was given by his office to Operation Scotcheck on 13 November; if he will call for a report from the chief constable of the Central region police on Operation Scotcheck; and if he will make a statement.
§ Lord James Douglas-Hamilton
Operation Scotcheck was a joint police and Health and Safety Executive initiative and my Department was not involved in this exercise. HSE inspectors were present at all the locations where this operation was mounted. The inspectors were checking compliance with the requirements of regulations concerning the transport of hazardous substances or goods by road. The police, as is customary in these operations, invited other Government Departments with particular interests to be present at the various checkpoints. It is not my intention to ask for a report from the police, nor will any information obtained from drivers during the exercise be passed to the Scottish Office.