HC Deb 11 December 1992 vol 215 cc818-9W
Mr. Dover

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will require independent quality assurance certification for both the manufacture and the erection of any structural steelwork imported for use in the construction of any major transport construction projects, including the second Severn bridge crossing and the second M6 Thelwall viaduct.

Mr. Kenneth Carlisle

The supply, fabrication and erection of the steelwork for Departmental schemes must comply with the Department's Specification for Highway Works and the national bridge code British Standard 5400. There are no specific independent quality assurance certification requirements for the fabrication of steelwork in the Specification at present, but the Department will shortly be discussing with the British Constructional Steelwork Association (BCSA) the recognition of an independent QA scheme for structural steelwork. Once a scheme has been recognised it will be included in the specification for future projects.

The second Severn crossing is a privately financed project, although it must comply with the Department's requirements. There is a specific requirement for QA for the project. A QA scheme was proposed by Laing/GTM and approved by the Government agent, who will from time to time check compliance. The steelwork subcontractor's own QA scheme may be accepted, if it is deemed to be equal to that of Laing/GTM.

While there is no specific QA requirement for Thelwall viaduct, full compliance with the Specification will be insured by inspection and testing of both the fabrication process and the steelwork itself. If the latter is produced

£ million cash
1985–86 1986–87 1987–88 1988–89 1989–90 1990–91 1991–92
British Rail
Rolling stock 90 81 107 208 209 265 331
Infrastructure 309 318 419 337 487 593 674
Total British Rail 399 399 526 545 696 858 1,005
Other Rail
Rolling stock 63 71 72 77 131 157 178
Infrastructure 155 166 246 239 342 550 486
Total other rail 218 237 318 316 473 707 664
Total Rail 617 636 844 861 1,169 1,565 1,669


1. Other rail comprises London Underground, Docklands Light Railway, Manchester Light Rapid Transport and South Yorkshire Supertram.

2. Figures for other rail rolling stock include an allowance for investment in wagons privately owned by BR customers. However, as information is only available on end year stock, estimates have been made based on this and assumptions on scrappage rates and the cost of a private wagon. The resultant estimates have a large range of error. Therefore, an estimate, £50 million per annum, an average based on the last five years, has been calculated and included as a tentative estimate.

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