Update on HGV testing requires for travel to EU
Heavy-goods vehicle (HGV) drivers are being reminded by Government to carry out a COVID-19 test away from port locations at one of the 37 testing sites available. 235,000 tests have been carried out since the French Government altered requirements around COVID-19 testing due to concerns over mutant strains which were beginning to emerge. As a result of testing levels, vital goods continue to flow into the UK and HGV traffic in Kent is back to normal levels.
The testing requirements risked sustained backlogs of HGVs in Kent and other borders, but traffic has continued to flow freely. Ten mobile testing units were in operation over the Christmas period to maintain the flow of goods, alongside NHS Test and Trace and personnel from the Ministry of Defence.
The French Government have now altered the requirements facing hauliers looking to travel from the UK to France. Irish COVID-19 testing certificates will now be accepted by French authorities for hauliers using UK ports, and that hauliers who are in the UK for less than 48 hours will not need a test. Transport Minister Rachel Maclean said: “It’s really encouraging to see traffic continuing to run smoothly through Kent, and I’d like to thank the haulage industry, the armed forces, motorway service stations and the Kent Resilience Forum for working tirelessly with us”.
An additional reminder has been issued to hauliers that the Kent Access Permit is only valid for the 24-hour period stated on the permit – they must enter Kent and cross the border in this period or risk delays as they apply for a new permit.