From 6 April, new testing requirements will be introduced for hauliers entering England from abroad, to help reduce the risk of new COVID-19 variants entering the UK.
All hauliers staying in the country for longer than two days will be required to take a lateral flow test before the end of day two. Hauliers remaining in the country will then be required to take a further test every three days – so typically on days 2, 5 and 8.
Hauliers will be able to access testing at one of the many government information and advice sites – which provide hauliers with free coronavirus tests – or use workplace or community testing centres.
New legal requirements to limit contact between the community and international hauliers are also set to be introduced alongside inbound haulier testing. All hauliers arriving in the country will now be required to self-isolate in their cabs for the duration of their time in England, leaving only for specific reasons such as to buy food, use a toilet or undertake limited exercise, or get a COVID-19 test, among other reasons.
These requirements on hauliers will apply for the 10 days after arrival. Hauliers found not to be complying with the new self-isolation requirements could face fines of up to £1,000.
Hauliers that test positive at any point throughout their journey in England, and that cannot secure a safe environment in which to self-isolate, will immediately be re-directed to self-isolate in hotel accommodation set up by the Government at a number of locations in the country. If they are able to safely self-isolate at home or with family or friends in the UK, there are expected to do so.
Hauliers will be subject to regular monitoring on arrival in England.
The government is confident new inbound testing requirements for hauliers won’t negatively impact trade, given the successful roll out of the outbound testing regime did not markedly impact on trade flows
- The testing requirements will apply equally to UK-resident hauliers, who will in addition be able to make use of home testing kits or workplace testing facilities to satisfy the new requirements.
- Hauliers will also continue to need to provide evidence of a negative coronavirus test result before travelling from England to the Netherlands, Germany or Denmark. A similar requirement for hauliers travelling to France was recently removed.
- A full list of the government’s information and advice sites.
- Hauliers will be able to use evidence of the same negative test result to satisfy both the new UK requirement for regular testing and the pre-departure requirements of other countries.
- Hauliers have been highly compliant with the current testing requirements, with over 360,000 having already been successfully tested for COVID-19 since December so far.