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Crisis At Calais – What Fleet Managers Need To Know

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As the crisis in Calais rages on the situation becomes more desperate for the UK fleet and haulage industry.

The last few weeks have been frantic with striking ferry workers blocking traffic in and out of the port and an increasing number of desperate migrants trying to board vehicles travelling through to the UK.

This has seen a crippling loss of business and serious effects on productivity with drivers facing increasing dangers on the job.

But what do Fleet Managers need to know about the situation, and what can they do to ensure things keep moving?

In this post we provide information that will keep your drivers safe, alternative routes your business can take and how technology may help.

If your business is unable to use another route it is vital that there is a reliable system in place for ensuring vehicles are secure and drivers are safe when passing through the Dover/Calais port.

The AIB (Airsports Insurance Bureau) provides a list of measures businesses need to take:

  • Ensure suitable security devices are fitted in the vehicle and that load space is secure.
  • Provide drivers with instructions in writing about how to operate the system.
  • Provide drivers with vehicle security checklists.

The process that your drivers must follow includes:

  • The thorough checking of the vehicle before coming back into the UK and following every stop made.
  • Once the vehicle has been loaded, suitable vehicle security devices such as seals, padlock and tilt cord have to be used.
  • A record should be kept following every check on a "vehicle security checklist".
  • If the driver suspects that someone has hidden in the vehicle they should make contact with the police, border control or Border Force.
  • If there is anybody hiding in the vehicle your driver should not approach him or her.

According to information originally published in The Telegraph these are the alternative routes your business can choose in order to avoid the disruption at cross-Channel services in Dover and Calais.

Newhaven to Dieppe -DFDS Seaways (0871 574 7235; dfdsseaways.co.uk) - Fastest crossing time: four hours

Portsmouth to Le Havre via Brittany Ferries (0871 244 1400; brittanyferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: 5½ hours (slower économie service); 3¾ hours (fastcraft)

Portsmouth to Caen via Brittany Ferries (0871 244 1400; brittanyferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: six hours (cruise-ferry)

Portsmouth to Cherbourg via Brittany Ferries (0871 244 1400; brittanyferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: three hours (fastcraft)

Poole to Cherbourg via Brittany Ferries (0871 244 1400; brittanyferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: 4½ hours (cruise-ferry)

Portsmouth to St Malo via Brittany Ferries (0871 244 1400; brittanyferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: 8¾ hours

Plymouth to Roscoff via Brittany Ferries (0871 244 1400; brittanyferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: six hours

Poole to St Malo via Condor Ferries (0845 609 1024; condorferries.co.uk) - Fastest crossing time: 5½ hours

Harwich to Hook of Holland via Stena Line (0844 770 7070; www.stenaline.co.uk) - Fastest crossing time: seven hours

Hull to Zeebrugge via P&O Ferries (0800 130 0030; www.poferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: 14 hours 30 mins

Hull to Rotterdam via P&O Ferries (0800 130 0030; www.poferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: 12 hours

Newcastle to Amsterdam via DFDS Seaways (0871 574 7235; dfdsseaways.co.uk) - Fastest crossing time: 15 hours

Plymouth to Santander via Brittany Ferries (0871 244 1400; brittanyferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: 24 hours

Portsmouth to Bilbao via Brittany Ferries (0871 244 1400; brittanyferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: 24 hours

Portsmouth to Santander via Brittany Ferries (0871 244 1400; brittanyferries.com) - Fastest crossing time: 24 hours

If your business is unable to use another route, it's vital that there is a reliable system in place for ensuring your vehicles are secure when passing through the Dover/Calais port.

The AIB (Airsports Insurance Bureau) provides a list of measures businesses need to take:

  • Ensure suitable security devices are fitted in the vehicle and that load space is secure.
  • Provide the driver(s) with instructions in writing about how to operate the system.
  • Provide driver(s) with vehicle security checklists.

The process that your drivers must follow includes:

  • The thorough checking of the vehicle before coming back into the UK and following every stop made.
  • Once the vehicle has been loaded, suitable vehicle security devices such as seals, padlock and tilt cord have to be used.
  • A record should be kept following every check on a "vehicle security checklist".
  • If the driver suspects that someone has hidden in the vehicle they should make contact with the police, border control or Border Force.
  • If there is anybody hiding in the vehicle your driver should not approach him or her.

Can technology help?

You may also identify geographical areas that are perceived as high risk. With the location summary reports provided by a Navman Wireless it becomes easy to highlight troublesome areas which makes it a lot easier to inform drivers where they shouldn't consider stopping.

Click here to find out more about Navman Wireless fleet tracking systems


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