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Road Traffic Control

Volume 487: debated on Monday 26 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what guidance his Department (a) has recently produced and (b) plans to produce for local authorities on their enforcement of box junction offences; and if he will make a statement. (250222)

The enforcement of box junctions in London is carried out under legislation promoted by the relevant local authorities. The Secretary of State has, therefore, no specific powers under which to produce guidance. The remaining provisions in part 6 of the Traffic Management Act 2004—which include the power to enforce box junctions—will be brought into force in due course with regulations. These will be accompanied by statutory guidance setting out the matters to which local authorities using the powers must have regard.

The Department for Transport has been discussing the timing and implementation of these powers with the Local Government Association, and our decisions will be informed by the outcome of their soundings with their membership.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the duties are of (a) traffic managers and (b) local traffic authorities with regard to (i) responding to and (ii) preventing traffic gridlock; what guidance his Department has issued on this issue; and what plans he has to issue such guidance in the next 12 months. (250227)

Local traffic authorities have a statutory responsibility (Network Management Duty) to secure the expeditious movement of traffic and to facilitate the same on the networks of others. The Traffic Manager is responsible for carrying out this function. The formal duties are laid out in sections 16 and 17 of the Traffic Management Act 2004.

The Department for Transport has published ‘Network Management Duty Guidance’ and ‘Guidance on Intervention Criteria’ to help Traffic Managers understand and implement the duty. These came into force in December 2004 and 12 March 2007 respectively. Currently there are no plans to issue further guidance in this area.