Operation Stack ‘a misery for Kent motorists’

Written by Ellie

The Freight Transport Association (FTA) has responded to the House of Commons Transport Committee's recommendations that Operation Stack be extended in the south-east of England.

Delivered as part of measures to better manage traffic flows on the M20 in Kent, the scheme was introduced last summer in response to the crisis in Calais and delays for embarkation at the Channel Tunnel. It has been in operation ever since.

However, the impact of the initiative on local communities has been marked to date, with widespread delays to surrounding roads and disruption to journeys for both the public and essential business deliveries.

Malcolm Bingham, FTA head of road network management policy, said: "There needs to be a managed flow of traffic to the port and tunnel.

"If a large lorry area is the answer, then the residents of Kent deserve an explanation of what the need is and how it will work. Equally if that is not the solution, any alternatives need to be fully explored."

He added that chaos was witnessed on the M20 last summer following the launch of Operation Stack, with some vehicles stuck in queues of over 35 miles long. Meanwhile, the financial impact on the UK's logistics professionals rose to £750,000 per day at the height of the crisis.

These are now issues that the FTA believes must be avoided at all costs moving forward.

Posted on 2nd June 2016

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