Skip to main content

Snow and Ice

Volume 505: debated on Wednesday 3 February 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the costs to his Department arising from the severe weather conditions in the period 4 January to 18 January 2010; and if he will make a statement. (313585)

It is not possible to assess the costs to the Department of the disruption to transport arrangements and the consequent impact on the ability of staff to attend for work during the period of the recent bad weather. Costs such as the costs of structural damage to Defence facilities and infrastructure could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Costs were incurred by the Department in providing military assistance to the civil community where there was an immediate threat to human life or to alleviate suffering. It is standard practice not to charge for such assistance and consequently information on the costs of these operations is not held centrally and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

The Department provided assistance to several external organisations where lives were not in imminent danger. The cost of such assistance will be reimbursed by the external organisations involved and there will be no net cost to the Department.