Lorry drivers told to expect four-hour delays at Dover post-Brexit

Dover TAP which is designed to stop the port clogging up with traffic and has already been put in place 20 times so far this year, compared to 69 times for the whole of 2021.

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Lorry drivers may have queue for four hours at Dover on busy days in the UK post-Brexit but the overall picture is positive haulage industry boss Rod McKenzie has said.

New checks that came into force at the beginning of the year have caused friction in Dover as well in Calais across the Channel.

Miles-long queues of HGVs waiting to get into the crucial trade port have been a regular sight in the first weeks of 2022.

Lorry queues on the A20 for the Port of Dover in Kent, caused by the natural increase of traffic following on from the Christmas/New Year break.
Lorry queues on the A20 for the Port of Dover in Kent, caused by the natural increase of traffic following on from the Christmas/New Year break.

On busy days this has meant long queues of lorries lining up along the A20 due to the Dover Traffic Assessment Project (TAP) being implemented.

Dover TAP is designed to stop the port town being clogged up with traffic and has already been put in place 20 times so far this year, compared to 69 times for the whole of 2021.

Rod McKenzie, executive director for policy and public affairs for the Road Haulage Association (RHA), said post-Brexit border checks “mean friction where none existed” but that the overall picture was positive.

“Any change is uncomfortable,” he told PA, adding: “That’s part of leaving the European Union and having to do new border customs checks.”

Mr McKenzie said that delays of three or four hours on busy days are to be expected going forward.

Asked if the overall picture of freight moving through Dover was positive, he said: “Yes, I think it is.

“A negative picture would be if the borders were not working and there was total chaos.

“What we have got is friction because there’s a check, but it’s not disastrous,” he added.

Last month the chief of Dover port Doug Bannister warned that the UK has just months to avoid huge disruption to holidaymakers when new EU rules come into force in September – despite knowing about the problem for two years.