Reply To: End of the Cross Channel Ferry?

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Added to which, the completely contradictory explanations coming from Eurostar and the tunnel operator. about what had happened, what fixes were required and what services were to operate.

Bearing in mind the, by now, repeat instances of lorry fires, just what is Le Shuttle and the freight haulage industry doing to get a long-overdue grip on this issue? Just how is it that lorries can either over-heat or burst into flames once on the back of a rail flat-bed?

The issue is by no means confined to the Chunnel but is also an issue for the ferry industry as well. The Italian ferry that caught fire en route from Athens to Italy over the New Year went up in flames so nicely because the cargo of trucks and storage vessels containing highly inflammable olive oil leaked onto hot engine parts after vehicle overhead clearance rules were, apparently, ignored. The ship pitched in heavy seas, the tanks hit the roof and ruptured and then caught fire. It was a miracle that the entire ship and its passengers were not comprehensively cooked.

Canucklad: From my time in the MoDUK – when Chunnel counter-terrorism issues were part of my remit – I can advise that there was a lot of investment in time, procedures and equipment to prevent terrorist attacks. It would appear that it is the ostensibly “low level” stuff (lorry fires) that is causing the problems. That said, there are few places with public access that are entirely 100% safe from any kind of eventuality.

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