HC Deb 07 March 2000 vol 345 c597W
Mr. Bill O'Brien

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what appraisals his Department has undertaken of the time that lorries are delayed on congested motorways and trunk roads; if he intends to take action to reduce delays by lorries and other heavy vehicles; and if he will make a statement. [112705]

Mr. Hill

In preparation for our report, "Tackling Congestion and Pollution", published in January, we estimated the total amount of extra journey time (total vehicle hours spent travelling less those which would have been incurred at free flow speeds) resulting from congestion on English roads in 1996. By drawing on this analysis it is possible to estimate the proportion of the total amount of time lost by different kinds of vehicle on a range of road types. Although these techniques are not yet sufficiently well developed to allow a separate estimate to be produced for the trunk road network, estimates can be produced for motorways and A roads as a whole. These estimates suggest that, taken together, motorways and A roads outside urban areas accounted for some 12 per cent. of the total amount of time lost by heavy goods vehicles on English roads in 1996. This estimate includes only time lost due to general congestion and does not allow for time lost due to incidents or road works.

Our integrated transport White Paper set out a package of measures to tackle congestion and pollution, based on concerted action by local authorities, businesses, Government and the general public. We will continue to take this forward, including through the Transport Bill, and our 10-year plan to modernise Britain's transport system (to be published in the summer).

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