French customs strikes spark more road and rail chaos between London and Paris with Eurostar passengers left queuing for hours and massive lorry tailbacks on the M20 motorway
- French border officials striking over pay and staff levels after Brexit
- The three weeks of industrial action have left Eurostar passengers stranded
- There are long queues of lorries lined up on the M20 waiting to get to France
Eurostar customers have been told delays will continue until next week while tailbacks of lorries bunged up motorways in Kent due to a long-running strike by French custom officials.
French border officers have taken their industrial action into a third week despite being offered a pay rise worth at least £700 per worker.
Passengers hoping to use the train service between London and Paris have been left stranded as Eurostar today warned that the misery will continue until at least Sunday.
Eurostar passengers trying to return to the UK have been held hostage by striking French customs officials
Eurostar is telling passengers only to travel ‘unless absolutely necessary’ until Sunday
The misery continues on both sides of the channel, with delayed passengers sat in St Pancras
A Eurostar spokesman said: ‘We continue to advise all Paris passengers not to travel unless absolutely necessary up until 24/03/19. Long queues and delays are expected due to ongoing industrial action by French customs.’
Passengers have been forced to pay for extra nights in hotels after being unable to return to the UK. Others have been left standing for hours in queues hoping to board a train.
One passenger wrote: ‘The scumbags that call themselves French customs officers are paid even when they create such a mess. And they have no honor so they don’t give a **** about the people who actually work and pay taxes to feed them.’
Another added: ‘Can passengers meet with striking officials to explains precisely the anxiety, disruption and hassle their action is causing and take their names so that civil legal action can be taken?’
Meanwhile lorries waiting to cross the channel are queued up on the M20 in Kent
Huge delays to hauliers have been caused by the French workers strike over pay
Meanwhile, the M20 motorway in Kent has seen huge queues of channel-bound lorries building up as the customs strike hits the Channel Tunnel.
The county’s highways authorities tweeted: ‘Due to long queues on the M20 J11a eastbound exit slip road, approaching Eurotunnel, near Folkestone, the M20 J11 eastbound entry slip road is closed, as a traffic management measure.’
Photos of the motorway show long lines of lorries queuing on closed lanes, with delays expected to take days to clear.
As well as higher pay and better working conditions, French customs officials want more staff.
They say this will be needed after Brexit to help process British citizens who will no longer have European Union passports. Customs officials have complained the prospect of doing more work for the same pay.
Operation Stack is in place on the M20, with lines of lorries waiting for the Channel Tunnel