New Covid testing site in Peterborough for HGV drivers to prevent queues heading into France

The site at Peterborough Services by Junction 17 of the A1M is one of at least 20 to open across the country by the Government with the army being deployed to offer support. In addition, to help hauliers cross the Channel as quickly as possible, the Government is offering to help any business set up a testing centre at its own premises to ensure trucks heading for France depart ‘Covid ready’. The Department of Health and Social Care will also offer support, including the provision of testing kits entirely free of charge.

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New Covid testing site in Peterborough for HGV drivers to prevent queues heading into FranceThe testing centre is at the Haddon services area near Peterborough.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “As a result of the heroic efforts of hundreds of military and civilian personnel who have worked hard over the past 10 days we have made incredible progress in clearing the queues of drivers left stranded as a result of the French Government’s actions.

“If we are to keep traffic flowing in Kent it is essential drivers are tested before they travel down to the area and that they have a Kent Access Permit before heading to the border, and these new testing centres both at service stations and inside businesses will help reduce delays.” Military personnel will be at 10 of the new sites to provide Covid-19 testing for haulage drivers. Light goods vehicles and van drivers can also use the sites to get a test.

Lateral flow devices are being used to test hauliers that provide results within the hour and provide the necessary negative test result to allow them to continue on their journey into France. As well as delivering testing, staff at the sites can also provide guidance on new border processes after the end of the transition period with the EU and check whether drivers have all the right paperwork. Minister for the Armed Forces James Heappey said: “The Armed Forces are once again demonstrating their flexibility, redeploying to new testing sites to ensure quicker access and minimal disruption on the approaches to Dover and the Eurotunnel.

“As we saw throughout the festive period the Armed Forces are dedicated to help keeping the country moving, healthy and secure in 2021.”

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