LONDON – After France briefly closed its border with the United Kingdom and then asked for tests for the coronavirus, about 1,000 British soldiers were trying to clear the large backlog of truck drivers in southeast England during Christmas. They were worried about all this new, A more infectious variant of the virus.
Even with 4,000 international truck drivers spending another day in the cab, some progress was made on Friday, and traffic near the port of Dover in the English Channel headed for additional ferries that made short crossings into northern France Of Calais.
Military personnel are directing traffic and helping drivers with a large-scale test plan, and they must test negative to enter France. French firefighters were also recruited to help the military test the coronavirus.
Officials from the Department of Transport in the UK said that out of the 2,367 coronavirus tests conducted so far, except for three tests, the rest have been negative.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that a variant of the virus has increased the transmission rate by 70%, driving the rapid spread of infection in London and its surrounding areas. France closed its border with Britain for 48 hours on Sunday. As a result, the capital and many other places in England have seen tightening of lockdown restrictions and cancellation of family holiday gatherings.
Most of the tests were conducted at an abandoned airport at Manston Airport, 20 miles from Dover. Free food and drinks were sent to the trapped truck driver, Manston placed more than 250 portable toilets, and another 32 were placed along the M20 highway in Mathe.
“The most reassuring thing is that Manston’s food is in circulation, and I must voluntarily thank everyone who volunteered to help drivers stick to it in cold weather a few days before Christmas,” the UK Driver Duncan Buchanan (Duncan Buchanan) said. Road Transport Association.
The mood of the stranded drivers seems mostly optimistic, especially compared to the anger at the situation and lack of facilities earlier this week.
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British Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “I know that in this precious time of the year, many drivers find it difficult to get in a taxi, but I assure them that we are doing our best to send them back. Home.”
The virus has caused more than 1.7 million confirmed deaths worldwide, including nearly 70,000 in the UK, which is the second highest number of deaths in Europe after Italy.
Last Saturday, the British authorities extended stricter blockade restrictions to more areas as they tried to prevent the spread of new variants. In the past two days, the UK has recorded the two highest daily infection numbers, just under 40,000. Worryingly, the country’s favored National Health Service will soon face serious capacity problems in its hospitals and thousands of people will die from the virus.
Johnson said in a video sent to the United States that this Christmas is “not about gifts, turkey or brandy butter,” but about the form of hope, in the form of a coronavirus vaccine and the development of more vaccines.
The Prime Minister said: “We know that people will live next Christmas, and those we love will live next Christmas. This is precisely because we have made sacrifices, and this Christmas is not celebrated as usual.”
Johnson said on Thursday that more than 800,000 people in the UK have received the first dose of the vaccine developed by the US Pfizer Pharmaceuticals and the German biotech company BioNTech. The United Kingdom was the first country in the world to approve the vaccine, and started vaccinating health workers and people over 80 years old on December 8.