§ Mr. Dalyell
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the letter of 14 February from Mr. J. D. Rimmington CB, director general of the Health and Safety Executive, to the hon. Member for Linlithgow, what information he has been given by Railtrack about(a) the timetable for painting the lattice tie members on the Forth rail bridge, (b) the timetable for painting the compression members on the Forth rail bridge and (c) the qualifications of operating in a marine environment of those who made the judgments for Railtrack that there are no significant structural implications relating to rust or the movement to a longer term repainting cycle.
§ Mr. Watts
Railtrack is in the second year of an eight-year programme for painting the lattice tie members of the Forth bridge. The strategy for painting the inclined tubular compression members is under review but should he resolved shortly. Railtrack has many structures subject to a marine environment. Judgments about structural integrity and steel work protection are taken on the advice of chartered structural civil and mechanical engineers employed by the railway. An assessment of the condition of the bridge, including advice on the principles to be adopted for future painting, has been carried out for Railtrack by consultants W. A. Fairhurst and Partners.