Haulage Permits and Trailer Registration Bill [HL] - Report

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 5:15 pm on 17th April 2018.

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Photo of Lord Whitty Lord Whitty Chair, EU Internal Market Sub-Committee 5:15 pm, 17th April 2018

My Lords, I too was not going to intervene in this debate but one additional point occurs to me that the noble Baroness might like to take note of. To make the point I have to declare an interest: I am chair of the Road Safety Foundation and of an organisation called EASST, which deals with projects on road safety—roads and vehicles—in eastern Europe, the former Soviet Union and Asia. My point is that Britain has often led the way in road safety. Statistics are difficult to come by, but anecdotally the number of problems with trailers in developing countries with inadequate road systems in central Asia and even in eastern Europe is quite substantial.

We have heard of horrific cases here from my noble friend Lord Tunnicliffe, but there are equally horrific anecdotal cases from other countries. Given the respect in which Britain’s road safety expertise is held around the world, a report of the kind that my noble friend’s amendment calls for could well influence global road safety and therefore be a contribution from the DfT to the new global Britain, and could be presented that way to otherwise reluctant colleagues in the House of Commons who might not accept simply another report. It is important that we maintain that lead on road safety and this is one area which, to my knowledge, has not been systematically addressed in the international road safety community.