Foreign lorry drivers arriving in England for more than two days will need to take COVID-19 tests in a bid to tackle future variants, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has announced.
The new coronavirus rule, which will apply to hauliers from outside the UK and Ireland, will come into force on 6 April.
They will need to take a COVID-19 test within 48 hours of arrival and then one every 72 hours thereafter.
HAULIER NEWS: From April 6, lorries visiting England from outside UK (and the Common Travel Area) for more than 2 days will need to take a #Covid test within 48hrs + one every 72hrs after. This is to ensure we keep track of any future #Coronavirus Variants of Concern.
— Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP (@grantshapps) March 28, 2021
Mr Shapps wrote on Twitter: “This is to ensure we keep track of any future coronavirus variants of concern.”
Prime Minister Boris Johnson had already suggested Britain may need to tighten restrictions on arrivals from
France, including truck drivers, with a third wave of infections sweeping the continent.
A similar move by France in December caused chaos in Kent when it was introduced at short notice, but the
industry believes there is now enough rapid testing available to be able to cope and not cause problems.
The has banned foreign travel until at least 17 May, although essential workers such as lorry drivers have been
allowed to cross borders to supply the country’s food stores and manufacturing plants.