Airfield Becomes World’s Largest Truck Stop After Border Closings
As Covid-19 spikes again across the globe, borders are being closed and travel is slowing down. Specifically in Europe, countries are being stringent on the coming and goings across the border.
France had announced its borders with Britain would be closing to prevent the spread of a more contagious strain of COVID-19 recently discovered. As a result, thousands of truckers were stranded at the U.K. English Channel port of Dover. However, even though the travel ban has since been lifted so trucks are starting to get back on the road.
According to the BBC, an estimated 2,850 trucks have been stranded. During the shutdown, trucks were redirected to the Manston Airport which at one point held somewhere in the neighborhood of 4,000 trucks.
If this doesn’t sound like much or you want to put it into context, the Iowa 80 Truckstop, unofficially named the World’s Largest Truck Stop, typically holds about 900 trucks. So there was quite the truck parking lot on this air field.
Borders were able to be reopened thanks to an agreement between the UK and France. However, travelers (truck drivers included) need to show a negative COVID-19 test less than 72 hours before crossing. To help speed this up, drivers are able to receive rapid lateral flow tests which can both detect the new strain and produce results in 30 minutes.
Even with the agreement in place, the port congestion isn’t expected to clear up anytime soon with some truckers even expecting to miss Christmas. Truckers stick together though! To help each other get through the chaos, they’re sending each other food and water since the provided airport truck services are slim. It’s reported that even restroom facilities are being closed.
We hope they are able to get back on the road soon and safely and even make it home for the holidays.