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Motorways: Standards

Volume 506: debated on Thursday 4 March 2010

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what the average delay in minutes has been between motorway junctions where there is hard shoulder running in each of the last five years. (319047)

Hard shoulder running was introduced on the M42 between Junction 3A and Junction 7 on 12 September 2006 and normally operates at peak travel times or when there is an incident.

In measuring delay the Highways Agency defines a free flow theoretical reference speed. For the M42, this is approximately 66 mph. Delay is measured as the actual measured speed of traffic compared to this reference speed and is quoted as the delay per 10 vehicle kms.

The following table shows the results for the M42 Junctions 3A to 7 for the last five years.

Delay per 10 vehicle km

Minutes

2005 total

2006 total

2007 total

2008 total

2009 total

M42 between M42 J3A and M42 J3 (LM503)

0.33

0.42

0.35

0.44

0.43

M42 between M42 J3 and M42 J3A (LM504)

0.53

0.67

0.51

0.64

0.42

M42 between M42 J5 and M42 J4 (LM505)

1.00

1.36

1.58

1.33

1.04

M42 between M42 J4 and M42 J5 (LM506)

1.38

1.65

1.38

1.46

1.14

M42 between M42 J6 and M42 J5 (LM507)

1.26

1.56

1.67

1.38

1.41

M42 between M42 J5 and M42 J6 (LM508)

1.31

1.56

1.43

1.32

1.06

M42 between M42 J7 and M42 J6 (LM509)

1.58

1.69

1.54

1.46

1.56

M42 between M42 J6 and M42 J7 (LM510)

1.32

1.47

1.33

1.31

1.03

The primary objective of managed motorway schemes is to improve journey time reliability. In the case of the M42 this has improved by 22 per cent. since the implementation of the scheme.