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New Clause "A"—(For Protection Of Certain Water, Gas And Hydraulic Power Undertakers)

Volume 463: debated on Monday 28 March 1949

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"—(1) In this section unless the context otherwise requires—

  • (a) 'undertakers' means the Metropolitan Water Board, The North Thames Gas Board, the South Eastern Gas Board or the London Hydraulic Power Company;
  • (b) 'operators' means the Commission or Council, and references to the acts or defaults of the operators include the acts or defaults of their contractors, agents, workmen or servants, or any person in their employ;
  • (c) 'apparatus' means any pipes, mains, siphons, plugs, wires or other works of the undertakers in or under any street;
  • (d) 'the authorised works' means the works authorised by section one of this Act:
  • (e) 'specified work' means such part of any of the authorised works as in its execution in or under any street will or may interfere with any apparatus;
  • (f) 'plans' means plans, sections or descriptions.
  • (2) At least fourteen days before commencing to execute any specified work the operators shall deliver to the undertakers plans of the specified work; and if it should appear to the undertakers that the specified work will interfere with or endanger their apparatus, or impede the supply of water, gas or hydraulic power, the undertakers may within fourteen days after the receipt by them of the plans give notice to the operators to lower or otherwise alter the position of such apparatus or to support the same or to substitute other apparatus in such manner as may be necessary.

    (3) Where notice is given by the undertakers under the last foregoing subsection, the protective works required by the notice shall be done and executed by and at the expense of the operators, but to the satisfaction and under the superintendence of the engineer of the undertakers (if after notice given by the operators to the undertakers of the time and place of such execution the engineer chooses to attend), and the reasonable costs, charges and expenses of such superintendence shall be paid by the operators:

    Provided that, if the undertakers by notice in writing to the operators within seven days after the receipt by the undertakers of notice of the intended commencement by the operators of the specified work so require, the undertakers may themselves do and execute such protective works, and the operators shall on the completion thereof pay to the undertakers the reasonable expenses incurred by them in the execution of such protective works.

    (4) Where no notice is given by the undertakers under subsection (2) of this section with respect to any specified work, the work may be executed, but not otherwise than in accordance with the plans delivered under that subsection.

    (5) The undertakers may if they deem fit employ watchmen or inspectors to watch and inspect any specified work during its execution, repair or renewal where any apparatus of the undertakers will be interfered with or affected thereby, and the reasonable wages of such watchmen or inspectors shall be borne by the operators and be paid by them to the undertakers.

    (6) The operators shall indemnify the undertakers against all claims, demands, proceedings, costs, damages and expenses made or taken against or recovered from or incurred by the undertakers by reason or in consequence of any interruption in the supply of water, gas or hydraulic power by the undertakers which may, without the written authority of the undertakers, be in any way occasioned either by reason of the exercise by the operators of the powers of this Act relating to the authorised works, or by the acts or defaults (in or in connection with such exercise) of the operators; and the operators shall pay to the undertakers the value of any gas or water which the undertakers may lose by reason of the acts or defaults of the operators in the execution of any specified work.

    (7) The reasonable expense of all repairs or renewals of any apparatus of the undertakers or any works in connection therewith which may at any time hereafter be rendered necessary either by reason of the exercise by the operators of the powers of this Act relating to the authorised works or by the acts or defaults (in or in connection with such exercise) of the operators, or which may during the construction or within twelve months after the completion of any of the authorised works be rendered necessary by any subsidence resulting from that work, shall be borne and paid by the operators.

    (8) Notwithstanding the stopping up of any street under the powers of paragraph 3 of the Third Schedule to this Act, the undertakers may exercise the same rights of access as they now enjoy to any apparatus of the undertakers (including apparatus not situate in or under a street):

    Provided that, in exercising the rights of access saved by this subsection, the undertakers, their engineers or workmen or others in the employ of the undertakers shall not interrupt the execution, maintenance or use of any works of the operators by this or any other Act authorised, and the undertakers shall compensate the operators for any damage to such last mentioned works occasioned by the exercise of the said rights.

    (9) The operators shall not in the execution of any specified work raise, sink or otherwise alter the position of any apparatus, or alter the level of any street in which such apparatus is situate, so as to leave over such apparatus in any part a covering of less than the existing covering or three feet, whichever may be the less (unless the operators shall in such case protect such apparatus from injury by artificial covering to the reasonable satisfaction of the undertakers), or of more than the existing covering or five feet, whichever may be the greater.

    (10) Any difference arising between the operators and the undertakers under this section shall be referred to and settled by a single arbitrator to be appointed in default of agreement by the President of the Institution of Civil Engineers.

    (11) In settling any question under this section an arbitrator shall have regard to any duties or obligations which the undertakers may be under in respect of their apparatus and to any duties or obligations which the operators may be under in respect of the specified work, and may if he thinks fit require the operators to execute any works so as to avoid so far as may be practicable interference with any purpose for which the apparatus of the undertakers is used."

    I beg to move, "That this House doth agree with the Lords in the said Amendment."

    This agreed Clause—which I was unable to include in the Bill at an earlier stage because the undertakers concerned were not then ready—affects the Metropolitan Water Board, the North Thames Gas Board, the South Eastern Gas Board, and the London Hydraulic Power Company. It is the usual protective Clause, common in these cases, and is an agreed measure.

    Question put, and agreed to.

    Remaining Lords Amendments agreed to, several with Special Entries.