20 June 2017

Road Haulage Driver Killed Through Migrant Action in Calais  

Polish Man Crashes Due to Blocked Highway

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Shipping News Feature FRANCE – The news everyone has been dreading finally came true at 03.45 today when the Polish driver of a van was killed after it collided with three trucks that had been forced to stop on one of the Port's main approach roads, the A16, as a result of migrants blocking the road with tree trunks. The van subsequently caught fire and the driver died. 9 Eritrean migrants were found in the back of one of the trucks and arrested. Commenting, Road Haulage Association (RHA) chief executive Richard Burnett expressed the views of many saying:

“Our worst fears have become a reality. We have been predicting this for two years. The lives of innocent people, who want no more than to be able to go about their daily business in safety are being put at risk by those whose only aim in life is to reach the UK. They don’t care about anyone but themselves and as a result a life has been lost.

“The security forces currently in place just cannot cope. It’s not just Calais itself that need protecting; it’s the approach roads too. President Macron must get a grip of this situation and we urge him to deploy the French military to provide safe passage for the thousands of UK-bound hauliers that use this route every day.”

The Polish registered Renault Master caught fire before exploding and the dead man is thought to have died instantly, a spokesman for the Calais authorities said:

”The accident happened close to Guemps, and was caused by an improvised roadblock.”

Roadblocks of this type have of course been a regular feature with migrants attempting to stop freight trucks so they can stow away in the chaos. Whether this terrible incident will have any good come out of it is open to question given the severity of the problem and the determination of some of the migrants. Certainly the situation has improved after the measures taken to ramp up security were introduced but, as this incident shows, the problems still persist.

Estimates from charity groups put the number of migrants still in Calais at around 600 and last month over 150 police were drafted in as the situation deteriorated rapidly as more poured into the region which had become quieter after the clearance of the notorious Jungle camp in October last year.

Photo: A driver forced to stop as migrants have piled debris on the motorway.

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