Local MP gets the runaround on Heathrow 3rd runway public safety zones

5.1.2010   (NoTRAG)

Hayes and Harlington MP, John McDonnell, has yet again attempted to discover
the location of public safety zones (PSZs) for a third runway and has yet again
been given the runaround.

Concerned residents and anti-runway campaigners have repeatedly asked BAA, the
government and civil servants about the areas covered by the proposed runway’s

These zones are created at the ends of runways to indicate an area most at risk
from aircraft crashes and therefore not suitable for certain developments, such
as homes.


      Jan 2008: Boeing 777 struggled to reach Heathrow before crash-landing near

John McDonnell MP asked the Minister of State for Transport “whether any section
of the M4 in the London Borough of Hillingdon would fall within a public safety
zone under the terms of his Department’s Public Safety Zone policy as set out
in circular 1/2002 on Control of Developments in Airport Public Safety Zones if
a third runway is contructed at Heathrow Airport.”

The dangers of aircraft flying over a densely populated part of West London will
have been considered by BAA and the government so both will be aware of areas
where people will be most at risk. Yet neither will give out this information.
Even “experts” at the DfT Con-sultation in 2008 were silent on the true impact
on public safety.

In his written answer to John McDonnell on 5th January, Parliamentary Under-Secretary
at the DfT Paul Clark said: “The Department for Transport (DfT) only establishes
Public Safety Zones (PSZs) for existing airport runways.

“For proposed new runways it would be a matter for the airport operator – BAA
in the case of Heathrow – to produce draft Public Safety Zone contours as part
of any future planning application.


“DfT Circular 1/2002 on “Control of Developments in Airport Public Safety Zones”
sets out the PSZ policy in relation to transport infrastructure at paragraph 19.”

Paul Clark knows that thousands of people will be affected by new Public Safety
Zones and that BAA will not release the information until AFTER the next general

BBC explains PSZs following 2008 Heathrow crash

What if a crash happened here? Hacan report from 2000