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Ministry of Magic

Department of Magical Transportation

"We have to be very careful about how we travel at the best of times -"
     -- Arthur Weasley to Harry (GF6)

On Level Six of the Ministry of Magic lies the Department of Magical Transportation (OP7). This is the Department that handled the complicated problems of transporting folks to the World Cup, including setting up a network of Portkeys all over Britain and working out where it was safe to Apparate into the area without being seen (GF6).

Apparition Test Center (OP7)
To legally Apparate, a witch or wizard must be of age and must successfully pass a test to acquire a license. To pass the test, the candidate must successfully Apparate to a specified destination without splinching himself or herself (GF6, HBP22).

The Ministry of Magic offers a 12-week series of Apparition lessons from a Ministry of Magic instructor, presumably each year. The cost for these lessons in Harry's sixth year was 12 Galleons. The lessons begin in January and are open to all students who will be of age on or before 31 August (that is, before the next school year begins). The lessons take place every Saturday; extra, heavily supervised practice sessions can be arranged (HBP17).

Broom Regulatory Control (OP7)
Broom Regulatory Control is part of the Department of Magical Transport (OP7), but it is not clear what functions they perform. Since underage students are permitted to fly on broomsticks without any formal licensing process, licences do not appear to be a requirement for broomstick use. It is possible, though only a speculation, that Broom Regulatory Control concerns itself with whether broomsticks meet adequate safety standards rather than whether the users meet a specified level of competence - e.g., whether broomsticks have adequate Braking Charms, for example, or whether the Flying Charm on a broomstick is up to standard.

Floo Regulation Panel (GF4) / Floo Network Authority (OP7)
The Department of Magical Transportation regulates, controls, and appears to maintain the Floo Network (see).

The Floo Regulation Panel (GF4) controls which fireplaces are connected to the Floo Network. This apparently cannot be done by even a qualified wizard without privileged access and/or special magical tools, because Sirius Black had to break into a wizarding house to use the Network rather than simply starting a fire in the cave where he was hiding at the time and using that (GF19). Connecting a fireplace to the Network does not require that the Floo Network Authority visit that fireplace, and can be done temporarily for as short a period as a single afternoon, as was once done with the fireplace at number four, Privet Drive (GF4) and with fireplaces at Hogwarts during Harry's sixth year (HBP17). Ordinarily such a temporary connection may be difficult to arrange; Arthur Weasley had "a useful contact at the Floo Regulation Panel" arrange the temporary connection for number four, while the Hogwarts connection was part of a security measure to protect students returning to school after the Christmas holidays.

The Floo Network Authority maintains and regulates the Floo Network. Employees of the Floo Network Authority have the ability to monitor Floo connections, and can eavesdrop on Floo conversations in a manner analogous to wiretapping a Muggle telephone. Witches and wizards working for the Floo Network Authority are referred to as Floo Network Regulators (OP28).

It is against regulations for a Muggle fireplace to be connected to the Floo Network (GF4), probably due to the likelihood of violations of the International Confederation of Wizards' Statute of Secrecy in the event of a connection becoming active. However, it is not clear how the regulations define a "Muggle household"; in this case, number four was considered a Muggle household although a wizard was then in residence. The regulation may be that at least one legally adult witch or wizard must be in residence in a household for it to qualify as a wizarding household, and/or that he or she must be the property owner/ leaseholder, but this is speculation rather than fact. It is somewhat disquieting that a connection to number four could be arranged without the knowledge or consent of the people living there, and without (as far as we know) any enchantments being required at the Privet Drive fireplace to establish the connection.

Portkey Office (OP7)
Portkeys have to be authorized (OP3, OP36); this is presumably the Office in charge of that. Since Portkeys are ordinarily made from objects that can pass as litter - objects that might appear on the Registry of Proscribed Charmable Objects, in other words, and which the Muggle Artifacts Office would have to worry about - it's not surprising that the Portkey Office keeps track of them.

Ministry Cars navigate traffic with magical ease (PA5, HBP6).


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