French firefighters scrambled to Kent with 10,000 Covid tests for lorry drivers

A team of hero French firefighters have been dispatched to Dover to help the chaotic scenes at the border.

The group will be armed with 10,000 coronavirus test kits for lorry drivers stranded on the Kent coast.

A last-minute mission is underway to get hauliers back on the road and cross the channel by Christmas Day.

But drivers can only get going back to the continent if they test negative for Coronavirus.

It follows the emergence of a powerful new strain that has ripped through the UK, sparking fears in Europe that it would spread.

France’s ambassador to the UK, Catherine Colonna, said that 26 "pompiers" were currently patrolling lorries handing out tests.

She said: "Neighbours, partners, allies and (yes) friends!! 26 French firemen work together with the UK teams in #Dover since this morning.

"They brought 10.000 #COVID19 tests. #StrongerTogether #thursdayvibes."

A picture showed hero firefighters in orange high-vis jackets and face masks carrying out a test to a driver in his cabin.

The huge operation has gotten underway after Grant Shapps, the UK’s transport secretary, promised that ferries would be crossing the channel on Christmas and Boxing Day.

  • Christmas hopes raised for Brits and stranded drivers as French border set to reopen

Originally France had shut its borders and left thousands of hauliers abandoned in Kent.

Following an agreement to get the supply chain moving again, drivers have been queuing for tests at a nearby airfield.

Tense scenes emerged yesterday as emotions boiled over between fuming long-distance truckers and Port police.

Many drivers have been stuck at Dover for over 48 hours with limited resources.

A group had crowded together at the port and began pushing and jeering at police.

As many as 10,000 lorries are thought to be parked along England’s south coast, including anew lorry part at Manston airfield.

The army has been dispatched to help carry out NHS-led tests, The Guardian reported.

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