Passengers who wanted to travel to the Netherlands from the United Kingdom were stranded by ferry in English ports on Sunday evening. The Ferry Service DFDS informed NU.nl that the Dutch authorities no longer want to allow boat travelers from the United Kingdom, due to the new variant of the Coronavirus that has appeared there. The Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management reported that trucks with two drivers are permitted to cross the ferry.
DFDS sails between IJmuiden, Newcastle and Stena Line between Hook of Holland and Harwich. The P&O ferry service, which operates between Hull and Rotterdam, has also been discontinued. The municipalities of Rotterdam and Velsen have decided not to allow travelers from the UK anymore, at the request of the ministry.
Passengers via NUjij reported that they had already purchased tickets, but were not permitted to board the plane. In other cases, travelers had already boarded a ferry, but were not allowed to leave and had to return ashore.
The ministry wants to allow the transportation of essential goods to continue. This is why trucks loaded with goods are allowed to cross the sea.
In the coming days, many European Union member states will discuss the situation surrounding the mutation of the Coronavirus and how they can stop its spread further.
Travelers are advised to find a safe place to stay
DFDS says it will see what it can do for passengers stranded in Newcastle, but news of the rejection is too early to have any concrete plans. The ministry advises people with Dutch identity who are now detained in the UK to find accommodation there.
For the Dutch who cannot leave the UK due to the new alternative to the Coronavirus, the government is looking at ways to help them. “Especially for compassionate cases,” states a letter from Ministers Cora van Nieuwenhuizen (Infrastructure), Hugo de Jonge (Public Health) and Ferd Grapperhaus (Justice) to the House of Representatives. The Department of State provides assistance where possible and necessary.
Ferry services earlier in the day believed they were allowed to sail
In a series of text messages from Stena Line to a traveler who saw NU.nl, it could be seen that someone was able to book a crossing at the end of the morning, but that was canceled after six hours.
Earlier in the day, several ferry services stated that they had not issued orders to block travel. DFDS and Stena Line announced that they can continue sailing on schedule. It was not clear when exactly this changed. The DFDS said this request may have come at around 8:00 pm “a few hours ago”.
Also there is no train and air traffic from the UK
It was also announced on Sunday that Eurostar trains would not be able to run to and from London from 00:00 at night from Sunday to Monday, because Belgium would then close its borders to travelers from the UK for 24 hours. A flight ban has also been imposed on all travelers from the United Kingdom.
The reason for these travel restrictions is a new type of Coronavirus that has appeared in the United Kingdom. This variant is said to be much more contagious. As a result, there is a strict lockdown in parts of the UK.
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