Written Answers. - Adventure Centres.

Thomas P. Broughan

Ceist:

66 Mr. Broughan asked the Minister for the Marine and Natural Resources when he expects to publish the heads of a Bill to establish a statutory regime to regulate safety in adventure centres, which he said in his statement of 4 May 2000 were expected by the end of May 2000; when he expects the legislation will be enacted; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16669/00]

Michael Bell

Ceist:

76 Mr. Bell asked the Minister for the Marine and Natural Resources when he expects to publish the heads of a Bill to establish a statutory regime to regulate safety in adventure centres, which he said in his statement of 4 May 2000 were expected by the end of May 2000; when the legislation will be introduced; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16822/00]

I propose to take Questions Nos. 66 and 76 together.

The Government recently approved the general scheme of the Adventure Activities Standards Authority Bill, 2000, and the legislation is currently being drafted.

The general scheme of the Bill follows the principal recommendations of an interdepartmental working group established to examine this critical safety issue. In essence the Bill will provide for the putting in place of a legislative framework to allow for the establishment of an independent adventure activities standards authority; mandatory registration of adventure centres and providers with the authority for specified activities; mandatory codes of safe operating practice for specified adventure activities; implementation of a regulatory scheme, involving inspection of centres and providers for adherence to safety codes; and powers for the authority to order cessation of the provision of any or all adventure activities in the case of failure to observe safety codes.
I hope to be in a position to publish the Bill in the next few months and look forward to the establishment of the adventure activities standards authority shortly thereafter.