To ask the Secretary of State for Transport by what means he plans to ensure that after the privatisation and deregulation of bus services in London (a) standards of service for the public are maintained throughout the week, (b) conditions of employment facilities and health checks for the staff are of the same level and (c) that in central London traffic congestion is not increased by unregulated flows of privately owned buses.
I am confident that competition will ensure a high standard of service on those routes which are operated commercially. The London Bus Executive will specify service standards for uncommercial routes operated under contract.The health and safety of employees will, as in other industries, be the responsibility of the individual employer, who will be subject to inspection by the Health and Safety Executive. I do not anticipate a great influx of new operators into central London, where the costs of bus operation are high. The traffic commissioner and local authorities will, in any case, have adequate powers available to them to deal with any congestion problems that do arise.