Brexit: Paperwork ‘horror’ sparks anger from hauliers

The director of a haulage company says he has seen journey times treble due to EU red tape since Brexit.

A drone shot of lorries parked at Waterbrook lorry park

Joe Johal, MD of AOG Couriers, said extra paperwork, Covid-19 tests and long queues have caused huge delays.

He said that one job that should have taken six-hours, took his driver over 22 hours to complete.

The Government has said it will work with businesses to ensure they are able to trade under the new rules.

But Mr Johal says he is already losing out.

“We are losing orders, our clients are sourcing components from elsewhere,” he said.

Joe Johal taken from a Zoom interview
image captionMr Johal said new paperwork and processes are slowing down business.

AOG Couriers is based in Hillingdon and moves aircraft parts from warehouses in Crawley and Worthing to the continent.

He added: “We have so much more paperwork to do now, and loads more processes.

“Before Brexit we would have got from Crawley to Paris in six hours. On Friday it took us 22 hours.”

He said the driver had a six hour wait for customs documentation and was then told to go to lorry park before being instructed to go elsewhere.

“Earlier in the day he had a Covid test but the documents were wrong so he had to have another one,” Mr Johal added.

‘Waiting in rain’

Graham Pask from the Road Haulage Association, said a “seamless electronic process” that they had hoped for was not happening.

“Some of the horror stories down at Ashford are that drivers are waiting out in the rain for two or three hours with paperwork trying to get it cleared,” he said.

A Government spokesperson said the traffic management system in Kent is working well, with no significant queues into Dover or Eurotunnel.

She added: “We know there have been some delays at one of the new inland border facilities, but there is enough capacity across all the new sites.

“The Government will continue to work closely with businesses to ensure they are able to trade effectively under the new rules,” she added.

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