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Eurotunnel stops trains after hundreds of migrants storm terminal in France

Channel Tunnel operator forced to halt services in both directions – forcing passengers to wait for hours – after ‘mass intrusion’ of migrants at Coquelles

Migrants run after crossing a fence as they attempt to access the Channel Tunnel in Frethun, near Calais, France, in this August 4, 2015 file photo. Eurotunnel is expected to report Q3 results this week.   REUTERS/Juan Medina/FilesGLOBAL BUSINESS WEEK AHEAD PACKAGE - SEARCH "BUSINESS WEEK AHEAD OCTOBER 19" FOR ALL 37 IMAGES

Migrants run after crossing a fence as they attempt to access the Channel Tunnel in Frethun, near Calais, France, in this August 4, 2015 file photo. Eurotunnel is expected to report Q3 results this week. REUTERS/Juan Medina/FilesGLOBAL BUSINESS WEEK AHEAD PACKAGE – SEARCH “BUSINESS WEEK AHEAD OCTOBER 19” FOR ALL 37 IMAGES

Migrants run after crossing a fence as they attempt to access the Channel Tunnel near Calais (Library image) Photo: Juan Medina/Reuters

Cross-Channel travellers from Britain have been hit with long delays after hundreds of migrants stormed the terminal and platforms in France.

Eurotunnel was forced to suspend services in both directions on Monday morning, forcing passengers to wait for almost four hours in Kent.

The “mass intrusion” overnight led the Channel Tunnel operator to halt services from Folkestone to Coquelles, in northern France, for several hours.

“They are coming in waves to occupy the police, then another wave comes, then another, until there is no more police”
– Eurotunnel spokesman

Migrants were said to be using diversionary tactics to occupy police so others were free to make a bid to cross into the UK.

A Eurotunnel spokesman said: “They are coming in waves to occupy the police, then another wave comes, then another, until there is no more police. One group is then able to get through.

“Then we have to take over and sweep through the terminal and clear them all from the tracks and the platform.”

The disruption affected early-morning trains and French-bound passenger services had resumed by about 10am.

However, Eurotunnel warned that holidaymakers faced a two-hour wait at the Folkestone terminal and another 90 minutes before check-in. A spokesman said they were “starting to get freight traffic moving” as well.

It meant drivers heading to the Eurotunnel terminal near Folkestone endured long delays as traffic built up.

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This entry was posted on October 19, 2015 by and tagged , .

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