Operation Stack is no longer fit for purpose, according to Richard Burnett, CEO of the Road Haulage Association, with Burnett calling for a new solution to ease congestion caused by disruption from traffic flows across the Channel.
Designed to be able to park up to 3,000 HGVs at any one time, Operation Stack was planned to relieve congestion on Kent’s road network, which carries 90 per cent of road freight per annum. However, the RHA said that in recent weeks almost 6,000 HGVs have sought space, causing tailbacks of up to 30 miles.
“Since the end of June this year, the motorway has seen unprecedented levels of HGVs parked up as a result of strike action by workers at Calais and ever-increasing numbers of immigrants trying to gain access to the UK,” said Burnett.
“We need to see easily accessible and safe lorry parks for HGVs and their drivers who, through no fault of their own, have fallen victim to action on the other side of the Channel. Drivers are stranded on the side of a motorway, often in soaring temperatures without food, water or toilets; some for up to four days at a time. HGV drivers, quite literally, move the UK economy. To expect them to work under such conditions is both unreasonable and unacceptable.”