Lorry drivers receiving specialist coaching amid fears of resurgence in migrant stowaways | Politics | News | EUROtoday

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Lorry drivers are receiving specialist coaching to detect unlawful migrants amid fears of a resurgence in stowaways.

Hauliers worry the 8,500 individuals detected annually are the tip of the iceberg and that “the real number” shall be “much higher”.

And sources worry a crackdown on small boat smuggling gangs will result in migrants making an attempt to cover in lorries as they board ferries certain for Britain.

Drivers at the moment are receiving specialist steerage, from coaching agency Fleet Source, on the primary devoted course.

Migrants can disguise in crates contained in the trailers, cling to the underside of the vans and a few even try to climb into refrigerated lorries in a determined bid to achieve Britain.

Fleet Source CEO, Nick Caesari mentioned: “Every year, an average of 8,500 people are detected entering the UK illegally using road transport. HGVs are the vehicle of choice, as there are so many places to hide.

“Border Force can’t check every vehicle, and so the real number of clandestine entrants will be much higher.

“If a clandestine entrant is discovered on a vehicle, the fines that an operator and its drivers will face can be financially crippling, especially considering the tight profit margins that most operators work under.

“Although the Border Force Civil Penalty Scheme mandates training as a requirement, there is a lack of detailed information from the UK Government as to what this should include.

“Our new dedicated training course tackles this issue by giving drivers the guidance need to maintain their safety and security, reduce the risk of Clandestine Entrants, and avoid being fined.”

Mr Caesari advised the Daily Express that drivers should take care of this “every day”.

He added: “These are very motivated individuals trying to reach the UK.

“You only have to watch videos to see how coordinated they are. They are highly coordinated and motivated.

“They work together. You can see that. It’s not just lone wolves. It’s unlikely you will just find one.

“There are so many places you can hide in a HGV.

“Someone mentioned to me the other day, that when the weather is poor, there is a shift to road transport. The Channel is extremely difficult. Weather is a key consideration.

“The more the Government invests in tactics around boats, do we naturally think everyone will give up and go home?

The common sense answer is that if it becomes more challenging to cross via boat, then road transport is the most obvious target.”

Around 12,000 migrants have already crossed the Channel to date this 12 months, regardless of repeated crackdowns.

Up to 600 could have efficiently reached the UK in the present day, after the climate improved.

One dinghy is known to have gotten into difficulties within the Channel with some individuals falling into the water.

But there aren’t thought to have been any casualties.

RNLI lifeboats and Border Force Vessels had been seen off the Kent coast all through the day.

May 1 was a report day to date this 12 months with 711 in 14 boats.

Mathew Smith, National Fleet Manager for Sunbelt Rentals, whose drivers piloted the CEASE course, commented: “The potential danger for drivers is a major concern.

“Educating our drivers on how to keep themselves protected and their vehicles safe is paramount.”

The Home Office mentioned lorry drivers are required to make sure their lorries are secured in opposition to migrants making an attempt to entry them.