Fianna Fáil TD for Wexford, James Browne has said now is the time to introduce restrictions on international visitors arriving into Rosslare onboard passenger ferries in order to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
Deputy Browne explained,
“This bank holiday weekend, people are being instructed to stay in their homes and avoid travel even within Ireland. This is fair, given the severity of this lethal virus but these rules are being flouted by many international visitors to Ireland.“
“In 2018, just over 400,00 people disembarked at Rosslare Europort. Public health will be hugely impacted if even a fraction of that figure materializes in the coming month, which is typically one of the busiest.“
“There is no screening upon entry into Ireland for passengers on these ships, nor are there any entry restrictions – they are simply being asked to adhere to social distancing guidelines. This is at a time when domestic residents are prevented from taking all but essential journeys.“
“It’s vital we facilitate international freight, but we should be taking measures to prevent people coming to Ireland for the purposes of tourism. I’ve heard many reports of many cars with foreign registration plates disembarking from ferries and traveling to the tourist hotspots which we’re lucky to have in this county.”
“The Gardai are out on the roads preventing people from going to holiday homes, but international visitors are free to get a ferry into Rosslare. It is totally wrong and is causing anguish in communities around the country, particularly in affected areas.“