FOI reference: FOI/18/00496
Date received: 14 February 2018
Date responded: 14 March 2018
1. How many road traffic accidents have occurred in the last 10 years on the M8 east bound carriage way between junction 4 and 3a between Whitburn and Bathgate.
2. How many times a section of the fence has been rebuilt following a road traffic accident on the same stretch of road in the last 10 years.
3. The cost of rebuilding the fence in the same stretch of road in the last 10 years.
4. The number of fatalities as a result of road traffic accidents on the same stretch of road in the last 10 years.
As the information you have requested is 'environmental information' for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.
This exemption is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.
I have numbered our response for ease of reference,
1 and 4. There have been 32 injury accidents for the period 1/01/2007 to 27/10/2017 for the length of the M8 eastbound between Junction 4 at East Whitburn to J3a at Bathgate. One fatality occurred as a result of a road traffic accident. These figures have been taken from accident data provided to Transport Scotland by Police Scotland.
Please note that the information provided is based on the current figures available. The following are potential reasons for an accident not appearing on our system:
Transport Scotland only holds accident information which is provided to us by Police Scotland.
Transport Scotland does not hold information relating to damage only accidents (i.e. not involving an injury).
Transport Scotland only holds accident information for the trunk road network.
The accident information Transport Scotland holds is subject to change. E.g. we receive late returns from Police Scotland, who are responsible for recording details of injury accidents.
Annual Scottish accident figures are published by Transport Scotland on a yearly basis and can be found by entering Reported Road Casualties Scotland into your search engine.
2. The boundary fence or safety fence was repaired a total of 33 times due to a road traffic accident for the length of the M8 east bound carriage way between junction 4 and 3a between Whitburn and Bathgate.
3. While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance Transport Scotland does not have the information you have requested in relation to the cost of rebuilding the fence in the same stretch of road in the last 10 years. Therefore we are refusing your request under the exception at regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs. As you may be aware, under the terms of the contract between Transport Scotland and the operating company, Amey, the Scottish Ministers are indemnified in relation to Damage to Crown Property and therefore we do not hold the information.
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House