Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

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simonhill
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Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby simonhill » 18 Jun 2018, 9:47am

New post for reports of any problems, or no problems. Not lots of discussions, health and safety gone mad, etc, etc.

If it looks like it is becoming a problem then it may need to be followed up with the Ferry companies.

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northernrebel
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby northernrebel » 18 Jun 2018, 4:18pm

Venezia Lines Venice to Porec/Rovinj May this year- had to remove all panniers and pass them through an airport style scanning machine. Listed forbidden items included inflammable liquids and knives. Let my litre of meths & Trangia through, missed my Swiss army knife, but removed my small sharp vegetable knife. I got a receipt and it was reclaimed from the boat's crew at the other end.
Coming back there was no baggage security check, just passport control.
Staff were incredibly helpful, basically you take all the panniers off the bike and then they load the bikes into a set aside space - looked like room for 6 bikes - and put your panniers on for you. They then unload everything onto the dockside at the other end for you and were happy to take some pictures of us on my phone.

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mjr
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby mjr » 18 Jun 2018, 5:09pm

As mentioned at viewtopic.php?p=1244701#p1244701, we were scanned leaving Dover. No problems except an annoying delay when we were already cutting it a bit close for check-in. Nothing confiscated. Only the people were scanned, not the bikes or bags.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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ANTONISH
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby ANTONISH » 18 Jun 2018, 5:38pm

It's usually just the same box tick questions with perhaps a cursory search - it's a couple of years since I've been through Dover as a cyclist - didn't realise they had a scanner now. We've been through security checks in a car with our bikes in bags - shouldn't they do car passenger scans?

I did get a serious search from British customs in 1967 - I think they were disappointed not to find any unusual substances of the smoking variety.

Why are cyclists considered to be suspicious characters?

botty
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby botty » 20 Jun 2018, 4:35pm

Probably 4 years ago now I had a 1940s lock knife confiscated at Portsmouth despite quoting police advice on when it was legal to carry.

I was on 1940 bike, wearing 1940s clothes with a full compliment of 1940s camping gear. It was quite clear this knife was for food preparation while camping. I was left without a means to prepare or eat meals.

I have noticed this before when travelling by motorcycle through that port. The port security staff pull all cyclists and motorcyclists to one side, interrogate each until finding one they can take something from. The remaining 2 wheelers are then allowed on their way.

Very discriminatory as cars/camper vans embark with there kitchen utensils intact.

crazydave789
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby crazydave789 » 20 Jun 2018, 6:56pm

botty wrote:Probably 4 years ago now I had a 1940s lock knife confiscated at Portsmouth despite quoting police advice on when it was legal to carry.

I was on 1940 bike, wearing 1940s clothes with a full compliment of 1940s camping gear. It was quite clear this knife was for food preparation while camping. I was left without a means to prepare or eat meals.

I have noticed this before when travelling by motorcycle through that port. The port security staff pull all cyclists and motorcyclists to one side, interrogate each until finding one they can take something from. The remaining 2 wheelers are then allowed on their way.

Very discriminatory as cars/camper vans embark with there kitchen utensils intact.


that is overly descriminatory IMO that verges on persecution.

Swiggy
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby Swiggy » 20 Jun 2018, 8:01pm

Travelled with my bike loads of times on ferries to France with no problems ever until last July I checked into Portsmouth very late for a night crossing, i'd already rung Brittany Ferries to let them know i'd be late due to train cancellations which they were fine about. Was pulled by customs after checking in about 10 min before the ferry was due to sail, they went through absolutely everything I had, tent, panniers, water bottles (one of which was full of premixed G&T) the lot. Nothing got confiscated, though I had penknife and cooking knife plus fuel for stove etc. I had to be body searched because I kept setting off the machine you walk through which was a bit of a palaver as they had to call a female officer to do it. We finally realised the cleats in my shoes were the culprits and I was good to go. Apparently they were on high security alert. Anyhow, no harm done and thankfully they held the ferry till they were done with me, literally started to sail as I parked my bike.

simonhill
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby simonhill » 20 Jun 2018, 9:54pm

botty wrote:Probably 4 years ago now I had a 1940s lock knife confiscated at Portsmouth despite quoting police advice on when it was legal to carry.

I was on 1940 bike, wearing 1940s clothes with a full compliment of 1940s camping gear. It was quite clear this knife was for food preparation while camping. I was left without a means to prepare or eat meals.

I have noticed this before when travelling by motorcycle through that port. The port security staff pull all cyclists and motorcyclists to one side, interrogate each until finding one they can take something from. The remaining 2 wheelers are then allowed on their way.

Very discriminatory as cars/camper vans embark with there kitchen utensils intact.


Was the knife on your person or in your luggage?

This needs to be stated, by all people reporting problems.

If the knife was on your person it was about to be carried into the passenger area, which is forbidden. If in your luggage then it would have stayed locked on the car deck. It is confiscating stuff in luggage that is the problem for touring cyclists.

botty
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby botty » 21 Jun 2018, 6:32am

It was in my luggage, inside my cooking set, under my tea towel. It took some finding after I stupidly said yes to having a knife.

hamster
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby hamster » 21 Jun 2018, 8:22am

We were searched at Portsmouth three weeks ago (family on 4 bikes) en route to Cherbourg. They asked to X-ray a couple of bags (inviting me to select!!!) and also sent us through the magnetic arch. It was all a bit laughable - caravans and campers were driving past, presumably they have large knives in their kitchen areas. Security staff were very cheery, but there was a bucket of Opinel (and similar) knives next to the magnetic arch.

Clearly nobody has thought about the bigger picture of risk on this one, but as a piece of security theatre... :D

Ther was no such security on the return voyage.

Tangled Metal
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby Tangled Metal » 21 Jun 2018, 9:05am

By the time the bags are in the car deck on the boat they'll have been searched and let through our confiscated. If searched before the boat you've got very good reason to have a knife of you've got full camping kit with stove and pots in your panniers or bike luggage.

There really should be no justification for confiscation of a knife that's fixed blade, kitchen knife or even a folding knife that's suitable for kitchen duties such as an opinel knife.

Once you're on the ferry you're unlikely to be searched again. We carry our panniers into our cabin, complete with cooking kit and iirc usually two knives (fixed kitchen knife and an opinel).

Has anyone argued their case when threatened with legitimate knife confiscation?

BTW anyone had issues with Plymouth ferries? We're off to Roscoff in August. It's our first time using that ferry.

Last year Newcastle was a really friendly port for us. They saw we had a young child and one of their port staff escorted us straight through the queues, past all the other cyclists and motorbikers straight to the head of the queue. Priority treatment. The return journey at were placed in a very small space to the side of all the articulated trucks who went on first. Atrocious safety conditions for cyclists IMHO and that's without considering young child being there. IJmuiden port that was, but it's off topic.

Newcastle port was a good port to pass through IMHO. Recommend that route to the Netherlands.

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Sweep
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby Sweep » 21 Jun 2018, 9:09am

botty wrote:Probably 4 years ago now I had a 1940s lock knife confiscated at Portsmouth despite quoting police advice on when it was legal to carry.

I was on 1940 bike, wearing 1940s clothes with a full compliment of 1940s camping gear. It was quite clear this knife was for food preparation while camping. I was left without a means to prepare or eat meals.

I have noticed this before when travelling by motorcycle through that port. The port security staff pull all cyclists and motorcyclists to one side, interrogate each until finding one they can take something from. The remaining 2 wheelers are then allowed on their way.

Very discriminatory as cars/camper vans embark with there kitchen utensils intact.

I have an excellent locking cooking camping knife from decathlon. The fact that it closes and then locks when opened of course makes it safer in use and when being transported. Am concerned by this thread - am i supposed to leave it in my kitchen? Thanks for starting the thread simon, will watch with interest.

Think i will email for a clear answer before using a ferry in future.
Sweep

Tangled Metal
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby Tangled Metal » 21 Jun 2018, 9:39am

In most European countries the knife law is comparable with the UK in that even locking knives and fixed blade knives are legal with justified reasons to carry them.

There are numerous knife forums with sticky threads explaining the legal situation if you're worried. Preempt any issue by learning the legal situation. If necessary I'm sure one of those forums will even provide the relevant section of law to quote.

Officials often don't know the exact legal situation and can actually go against it. I heard a story about a guy who teaches carving who had a demonstration stand at a village fête or some festival. After putting on his last demonstration of axe carving he started to pack up to go home. Two police officers had been in the audience. One walked over and started to confiscate his tools. Fortunately the other officer was his superior or training officer (or something like that) and started to take the pee out of his younger colleague for being a prat. The tiger officer had seen all the justification for the tools (knives, axes, splitting mauls, etc.) in the demonstration.

It's like traffic law, police and officials get taught the basics to enable their jobs but most of them do not retain that knowledge after a few years on the job. IIRC a study into what police officers remembered if their training a few years after leaving police college showed something like 80% of police officers could only remember 20% of what they'd been taught about traffic regulations / enforcement. I don't know how true that is because I read it on a cycling forum. Cyclists don't lie so I think the gist of it is true.

Tangled Metal
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby Tangled Metal » 21 Jun 2018, 9:42am

BTW if going to France then I recommend taking an opinel knife. Apart from it used to be said that every French man carried an opinel, it's a cheap but very good knife. If it gets confiscated they're widely available and cheap to replace. I think we have almost as many of them at SAKs (think I've two or three of my own and my partner has at least one lying around somewhere safe at home). One lives in the boot of the car.

Woodtourer
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Re: Please Report Any Security Check Problems When Boarding Ferries ex UK

Postby Woodtourer » 21 Jun 2018, 1:24pm

We are from the US and will arrive in Portsmouth mid August and then take the ferry to Cherbourg.
This discussion is quite timely!
My question is what about gas cylinders for stoves? Planning on buying ours in Portsmouth.
Thanks!