21 Dec UETR expresses great concern about Brexit and COVID 19 and their impact on road haulers SMEs
UETR expresses great concern about Brexit and COVID 19 and their impact on road haulers SMEs.
Whatever the outcome of the Brexit negotiations might be, customs and border checks will come into place on the 1st of January 2021.
In the last days several kilometers long queues of lorries built up in the way to access the Port of Calais and cross the English Channel. Truck drivers and haulers were stuck facing huge delays, and this is impacting compliance with driving times and rest periods as per EU Regulation n. 561/2006. The situation will likely get even worse after the 1st of January 2021 with post-Brexit checks.
In this regard, UETR considers extremely useful the introduction by the EU Commission of a generalized and temporary exemption from relevant provisions of the EU Regulation n. 561, in order to allow operators to benefit from the minimum of flexibility requested by these exceptional conditions. The Belgian Government has already approved a regulation making compliance with the EU law on driving and rest times more flexible.
This already complex situation is further complicated by the spread of a new variant of COVID 19 in the United Kingdom, with France closing its border with the UK for 48 hours, meaning no lorries will be able to sail from the port of Dover. Other EU Member States are setting similar bans, including flights.
This is resulting in drivers and haulers, who deliver goods the society is demanding, currently being stuck and not being able to get back home.
UETR calls on national authorities and the EU Institutions to provide these people, who are stranded abroad, with the means to get back home to their families.