Brexit – lorry drivers fined thousands since New Year after EU exit

Truck drivers have been fined more than £ 32,000 in Kent since the UK left the single market on New Years Day.

Since the UK left the internal market, new rules have been introduced for freight forwarders traveling to France, along with increased coronavirus measures.

In the first week alone, at least 84 enforcement notices were issued to drivers who entered the county without a Kent Access Permit (KAP).

A number of other drivers have been found violating traffic orders, including attempting to avoid the queue or take a shortcut along the A20.

In total, 113 fines of £ 32,100 were imposed on KAP and Operation Brock on Wednesday morning.

Some were caught leaving the county without the new permit required after the UK left the EU single market, while others tried to skip the line.

Nevertheless, a high percentage of the drivers who drive to the Eurotunnel and Dover arrive with the correct documents, the police said.

The KAP, unofficially named Kermit after the famous green frog, is designed to help manage traffic by confirming that drivers have the correct documents for EU import controls.

Each permit takes 24 hours and drivers need a new one every time their truck leaves the UK.

For escorted cargo travel from England to France, the driver must also have the result of a negative Covid-19 test carried out less than 72 hours earlier.

The feared queues of trucks along Kent’s motorways after December 31st have not yet occurred but traffic is expected to increase in January.

Kent Police Deputy Superintendent Claire Nix said: “While it is still very early, it is encouraging to see that a high percentage of truck drivers come to Kent with a negative Covid-19 test result, which currently requires travel to France and a Kent Access Permit.

“Although the volume of freight leaving the UK is typically small at this time of year, the total number of fines imposed still represents a small percentage of the freight movements already made.”

She added that the volume of trucks driving to the border is expected to increase “significantly” over the next few weeks. Therefore, it remains important that companies understand what is required.

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