Monday, October 18

Calais Chaos: Migrants Enter Channel Tunnel


 

 

Traffic along the Channel Tunnel has been disrupted overnight after migrants tried to enter restricted areas in Calais, according to reports.

“From 10.30pm (local time), around 150 migrants attempted to enter the platforms,” an official for the Pas-de-Calais prefecture told the AFP news agency.

The spokesman said traffic was interrupted with long queues of lorries and cars forming, but an AFP journalist said the incident was resumed a few hours later.

However, the disruption has had a knock-on effect on traffic.

Police in Kent say they have put into action what is known as phase two of Operation Stack – where freight traffic is queued on sections of the M20 – closing parts of the road to other traffic.

Last week, lorry drivers faced days of misery as they were held in miles of queues until Operation Stack was lifted.

Kent Police tweeted: “Op Stack phase 2 implemented due to disruption at Channel Tunnel. M20 closed coast-bound 8 to 9.

“Non-freight traffic now being allowed into Channel Tunnel terminal. M20 Junctions 11 to 12 no longer closed but delays likely. Check with operator if heading to Channel Tunnel as services disrupted.

“Apologies once again for delays and thank you all for your patience.”

The Eurotunnel passenger service has also been suffering delays overnight due to what has been described as an “incident on the terminal” at Calais.

A statement on the firm’s website said: “Our passenger service is currently operating with some timetable disruption, this is due to an incident on the terminal which is in the process of being resolved. There is a waiting time of approximately 60 minutes on the terminal.

“We sincerely apologise for the inconvenience this will cause to your journey.”

Ferry services are operating as normal at the Port of Dover, police said.

Around 3,000 migrants are currently camped out around Calais and are trying to cross the Channel into Britain.

France and Britain signed an agreement last September, creating a fund of  €5m per year to help Calais cope with the influx of migrants.

The money was earmarked for reinforcing security around the port and access to the Channel Tunnel.