Blaming Brexit for Dover chaos is ‘lame excuse’, Tory MP says
A critical incident was declared at the Port of Dover over the weekend following travel chaos, which saw passengers stuck in 14-hour-long queues. But do you think Brexit is to blame for the disruption? Vote in our poll.
The Port announced on Monday morning, April 3, that traffic had been processed and the critical incident was over. A statement read: “The critical incident has been stood down. The Port of Dover continued working round the clock with the ferry operators and border agencies to get coach passengers on their way and the backlog is now cleared.”
They added that a “full review” will begin to make improvements ahead of the Easter weekend.
Home Secretary Suella Braverman denied that Brexit was responsible for the delays. She told Sky News’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday: “I don’t think that is fair to say that this is an adverse effect of Brexit.
“I think we have seen we have had many years now since leaving the European Union and there’s been, on the whole, very good cooperation and processes.
“But at acute times, when there’s a lot of pressure crossing the Channel whether the tunnel or the ferries, then I think there’s always going to be a backup. And I just urge everyone to be a bit patient while the ferry companies work their way through the backlog.”
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However, Conservative MP and former Justice Secretary Sir Robert Buckland claimed that Brexit had contributed to the backlog. He said: “I think for my layman’s eye, looking on, it does seem that there’s a confluence of issues.
“I think that there’s no doubt that some of the increased checks that now are necessary since we left the EU will be a part of that. I think it’s all the authorities on both sides of the channel, both the French and the British authorities, have to work even harder to make sure that those short straits are working as effectively as possible at times of maximum pressure.”
Writing for The Independent on Saturday, travel columnist Simon Calder said: “We got what we signed up [for] after a democratic vote to leave the European Union and asking to become ‘third-country nationals’ in the eyes of the EU.”
While head of the Port of Dover, Doug Bannister, told Sky News: “The difference of being in a post-Brexit environment, means that every passport needs to be checked before a vehicle or passenger can cross into the European Union through France – and that happens here in Dover, so it does make processing more challenging.”
So what do YOU think? Do you think Brexit is to blame for Dover queues? Vote in our poll and leave your thoughts in the comment section below.
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