rivers traveling to France via the Eurotunnel are facing major delays as travel “chaos” continues in Kent for people trying to reach the continent.

​​​​​​​Although queues at the port of Dover were reportedly reduced to just an hour on Sunday after border and ferry officials worked “all night” to deal with “huge volumes of tourist and freight traffic ”, the main problems continue in the Channel Tunnel in Folkestone.

On Sunday, motorists stood in huge traffic jams for hours trying to reach the Eurotunnel.

One Twitter user described waiting in line for more than five and a half hours to board the train.

While Evening Standard transport editor Ross Lydall, who was stuck in the queues, described it taking more than two hours to drive less than a mile in traffic – at least a mile to get to the check-in point.

He said it was “absolute misery” for those stuck in their cars trying to reach the mainland, and the Coast Guard was distributing water to stop people dehydrating in the hot weather.

National highways have warned holidaymakers traveling to France to expect serious delays Kent on Sunday. A critical incident was still taking place in Kent on Sunday, alongside Operation Brock, with the AA saying the heaviest congestion is now around the Eurotunnel terminal in Folkestone.

Additional post-Brexit border checks and French Authorities blame insufficient staffing at checkpoints in Dover for the detentions.

Jack Cousens, the AA’s head of road policy, said Folkestone would be in the spotlight on Sunday because of the aftermath of the bumper-to-bumper chaos in Dover.

The M20, which leads to the south coast, is closed to cars from Maidstone to Folkestone due to Operation Brock, which has left lorries on the road.

When the motorway is closed, car drivers are directed to minor roads, which cause traffic jams and delays.

The two main roads in the direction of the Eurotunnel – the A259 and the A260 – were closed until 10am on Sunday as thousands of commuters headed to France.

Eurotunnel has warned of service delays, with processing times at Folkestone on Sunday morning from check-in to boarding around 90 minutes, but travelers say long delays are affecting travelers before they arrive for check-in.

John Keefe, Eurotunnel’s director of public affairs, said he was confident “the part we manage” – from check-in to departure – was working.

“Roads are beyond our competence. We are responsible for running the service – that’s the only place where we have any responsibility, any authority,” he said.

People reported sleeping in their cars overnight as delays on Saturday averaged around six hours, although some waited much longer.

Andrew Dyer-Smith and his family, who are heading to France for a summer holiday, spent 21 hours stuck in traffic on the roads around Folkestone. “We arrived at Folkestone yesterday morning at 9am to catch the 10.30am train and then slowly crawled for the last 21-plus hours,” he told the BBC.

A spokesman for Dover said on Sunday morning, as the situation there improved after two days of suffering for travellers, that “the French border is fully staffed and everything is running smoothly”.

“There will be lines, but short-term (less than 60 minutes) during the day.”

Mark Simmonds, director of policy and external affairs at the British Ports Association, said he was pleased to hear that the situation there had improved.

He told BBC Breakfast: “We’re glad to hear that things are going a bit better today. The queues have reduced this morning.

“The cabins are fully staffed and we’re told the port expects these cabins to be fully staffed throughout the summer.”

The port authority said the work carried out by them and their partners, “including strong support from our French border colleagues”, to clear traffic this weekend showed that “the Port of Dover’s summer plan will be operational until the end of the festive period”.

The delays at Dover led to clashes between French and British officials.

The UK government said French authorities could not find enough border staff to check passports, demanding they tackle a “horrendous situation”.

But French Transport Minister Clément Beaune hit back, saying France was not responsible for extra border checks caused by Brexit.


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