Eurotunnel fears border control chaos this summer

Eurotunnel fears border control chaos this summer

Eurotunnel may be forced to limit bookings this summer as the border control crisis threatens to spread from airports to rail terminals.

The company is reportedly slashing the numbers of booking available for the car, lorry and coach shuttle service through the Channel Tunnel in an attempt to reduce the prospect of lengthy delays.

It warned that motorists may face queues of more than four hours this summer, according to the Sunday Times.

Eurotunnel, in evidence to the home affairs select committee, said it fears a repeat of chaos on January 2-3 when bottlenecks at border control led to queues of up to four hours.

It voiced concern that a similar problem could arise during the peak summer period between June 1 and September 9 if fourteen passport booths for cars at the border control in Coquelles in France are not properly resourced.

Eurotunnel told MPs it has “reluctantly” decided not to fill trains to capacity so that those who fail to pass through passport control in time for their booked train can be accommodated.

With five trains due to leave each hour at peak times, it will require ”tens of thousands” of spaces to be left free over the 100-day summer season, the newspaper reported.

The UK Border Agency said it had agreed plans with Eurotunnel and French authorities to cope with busy periods, including during the Olympic Games.

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