§ Mr. Jenkins
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what actions his Department has taken to improve road safety in(a) Staffordshire and (b) the West Midlands. 
§ Ms Glenda Jackson
As part of the New Deal for Transport, the Government will be setting new national casualty reduction targets, underpinned by a road safety strategy. These will be published later this year.
It is for Staffordshire County Council and other local authorities in the region to promote and implement, with partners, schemes to improve road safety in their area. Local safety schemes, which are low cost engineering schemes which address known accident blackspots, are a very successful means of reducing accidents, funded through the annual Local Capital Transport Settlement. In 1999–2000 the West Midlands region has been awarded £5.992 million of which £0.450 million has been allocated to Staffordshire. This represents an increase of 18% and 45% respectively over the 1998–1999 settlement year and is expected to save 671 road accident casualties per annum.459W
The County Council has also been awarded two new transport packages this year, the Tamworth Package and the Safe Routes to School Package. Both of these packages will provide additional measures to improve road safety in the Tamworth area.