It is the operator’s responsibility to have an effective system in place to prevent “clandestine entrants” stowing on board lorries. A clandestine entrant is a person who hides in or on a vehicle to avoid going through UK border control. Failure to have an effective system may result in a civil penalty of up to £2,000 per clandestine entrant against the vehicle driver, owner or hirer. If a clandestine entrant is found the driver should not approach them but inform the Police.
Guidance and forms issued by UK Border Force can be found on the Home Office website and there is also a Home Office Accreditation scheme.
Operators should have in place an effective system to ensure drivers check and seal their vehicles. This should be in writing and drivers should also record the completion of this on a record sheet. Security devices such as additional locks and seals which are used should be part of an effective system. Operators should check that drivers are following instructions and regularly check the paperwork. Failure to do so will result in a civil penalty.
If you need help, we can advise you as to what is an “effective system” and how to mitigate any civil penalty.
For further advice or queries please contact specialist road transport & motoring lawyer Paul Atkinson.