The Government is urging hauliers heading to France from tomorrow onwards to pre-book antigen testing before they travel, because of the new French requirement for a negative Covid-19 test for arrivals into the country.
After tonight, all commercial drivers arriving in France from Ireland will have to produce a negative test result.
New, dedicated testing facilities are also due to open tomorrow at Dublin Airport in the blue long-stay carpark, and near Gorey (Circle K M11 Services) in Co Wexford.
The test will be antigen testing, with results expected within an hour, and will be free of charge for drivers.
Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan has said it is important for hauliers to factor the time necessary to get tested in this country, and receive their results, into their journeys to Dublin Port or Rosslare.
“Hauliers, and the overall transport and logistics sector, have worked tirelessly to ensure the continued movement of essential supply chains over the course of the Covid-19 pandemic, and against the challenge of Brexit,” Mr Ryan said.
“I am now encouraging all hauliers to familiarise themselves with new testing requirements that are coming into effect for travel to France.”
The testing will be carried out by Irish healthcare company RocDoc, and a third centre is expected to be opened at Holmestown, outside Wexford town, in the coming days.
Drivers can pre-book a test, as of now, www.rocdochealthcheck.ie/get-tested.
They should bring proof of their ferry booking to the test sites, as only commercial drivers heading to France will be dealt with there. They should also bring a form of photo identification and their digital tachograph card.
Drivers will have to show proof of a negative Covid-19 test, taken within 72 hours of their journey, to the ferry operators before boarding, and again to the French authorities when disembarking.
The Department of Transport said this evening that testing facilities will be reviewed on a daily basis “to ensure alignment between demand and provision of the service”.
Drivers will also need to carry with them a signed ‘declaration of honour’ form for the French authorities, confirming that he/she has no Covid-19 symptoms and that he/she has not been a close contact of a person who has tested positive for Covid-19 in the previous 14 days.
The form is available here.