Lonely Planet Writer

Eurotunnel to check just 20%of cars from April

Only one in five cars carrying UK and EU citizens will face checks by Eurotunnel as part of a new system being introduced in April to cut back on delays.

Eurotunnel checks to be reduced under next system next month
Eurotunnel checks to be reduced under next system next month Image by Hakzelf / CC BY 2.0

The serious reduction in exit checks which are crucial to fight illegal immigration already seem to be unworkable, the Daily Express reported.

Last week, it emerged that a legal loophole is being used to smuggle illegal immigrants out of Britain to prevent their deportation. They seek asylum in Italy before attempts are made to smuggle them back into the UK, where the loophole kicks in if they are caught, as they are then entitled to be returned to Italy rather than their native country.

Eurotunnel has warned that the new government plans will mean only random checks on a small number of vehicles. The director of public affairs at Eurotunnel, John Keefe, said that his company’s main concern was when significant delays occurred at peak holiday times.

Ten million passengers travelling on the shuttle would have to provide passport information for scanning in advance. However, he admitted that this would apply in reality to only 20% of travellers. Non-EU and UK passengers will all be checked on these journeys. The checks have been put back from the beginning of next month until the 8th of April to avoid delays over Easter weekend.