Berthing trials could lead to resumption of live animal exports at Port of Dover
The Jolene arrives at
the port of Dover
Live animal exports could start up from the Port of Dover if a
trial today is successful.
Berthing trials are due to take place this afternoon for a ship
that could be used to export live animals from the port.
Dover Harbour Board said it has had a request from Barco de
Vapor to operate its ship, mv Joline, from one of the port's main
ferry berths in the Eastern Docks.
The port bosses stress that safety is at the heart
of their operations - and they have asked Barco de Capor
to bring its ship in for an initial trial to ensure the
moorings and vehicle loading bridge connections are "fit for
purpose" before any exports can start.
"The ship will be subject to stringent operational rules and a
full evaluation of the berthing trial will be carried out before
any final decision is made as to the suitability of the vessel to
operate from the Port of Dover," said a spokesman for the harbour
"We understand that Barco de Vapor intends principally to
carry livestock transporter vehicles to and from Calais.
Live animal export
protests at the Port of Dover today
"The High Court has made it crystal clear that ports, and
Dover Harbour Board in particular, must facilitate this legal trade
but we will be rigorous in demanding through the relevant
authorities that all aspects of animal health and welfare agreed
with those authorities whilst in the port are fully complied
"We will therefore be liaising closely with the Department for
Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and its regulating
agency, the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency,
throughout this process."
The port has previously been the scene of many angry
confrontations between those who oppose the live animal export
trade and the transporters who operate it.
If the trade does resume, it is expected more demonstrations
will take place at the entrance to the docks.
It comes after the Port of Ramsgate tried to stop live
animal exports after the death of 40 sheep there last
It was then forced to re-open the trade.
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