Business, Freight News, Logistics, Road

New campaign to get truckers Brexit-ready

[ September 9, 2019   //   ]

The government has launched an information campaign in the UK and Europe to prepare hauliers and others for the UK’s departure from the EU on 31 October 2019, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps announced on 9 September.

It is aimed at ensuring that truckerss obtain everything they need from traders to get through border customs smoothly, reducing risk of delays at ports.

The campaign will include a billboard and media advertising campaign, 150 pop-up centres across the 10 countries covering the nationalities that process the most UK-bound road freight and the distribution of millions of multi-language information handbooks and pocket guides.

Grant Shapps said: “the efficiency of our ports is of paramount importance. This multi-million-pound initiative ensures the UK will remain open for business, with goods continuing to move freely.”

As part of the campaign an email was due be sent to 70,000 UK operators, industry bodies and other interested parties detailing essential information for those driving to the EU after 31 October.

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, hauliers will be required to go through customs checks when exporting goods to the EU from the UK. It is the responsibility of traders to apply and obtain the right paperwork for the goods hauliers are carrying, the government points out.

The UK government will also be providing hauliers with a handbook and a pocket guide to clearly set out how they can prepare themselves, their vehicles and their goods across the UK and the continent at service stations, truck stops and petrol stations.

Messages will be embedded into every booking confirmation email issued to hauliers by ferry operators, advising of the need for customs paperwork and there will be tailored emails in relevant languages to trade bodies in countries across the EU covering border readiness and new traffic management requirements, along with industry liaison days to ensure EU businesses receive clear information.

Road Haulage Association chief executive Richard Burnett said: “With only 38 working days to go until we leave the EU, it is essential that information is delivered in a clear and concise way. Traders, haulage operators in particular, simply don’t have time to digest and implement the small print. They need to know, right now, how to get through the next few months. It is imperative that the entire supply chain understands what will be required. This campaign will ensure hauliers get everything they need from traders to get through border customs smoothly, thereby reducing the risk of holdups at ports and ferry terminals.”

The announcement follows last week’s additional funding for Operation Brock – the contingency plan to tackle congestion in Kent in the event of any cross-Channel disruption.

The additional funds will be put towards a suite of measures, including readying the former Manston airport as a lorry holding facility, implementation of border readiness checks and increased resources to ensure drivers comply with Operation Brock.