Coronavirus Act 2020 - Schedule 20

CORONAVIRUS ACT 2020 - SCHEDULE 20
POWER TO SUSPEND PORT OPERATIONS

Power to give direction to suspend relevant port operations

1(1)The Secretary of State may, subject to sub-paragraph (2), give a direction in writing to an operator of a port requiring the operator to suspend such relevant port operations as the Secretary of State may specify in the direction.

(2)The Secretary of State may give a direction under sub-paragraph (1) only if—
(a)the Secretary of State considers that there is a real and significant risk that, as a direct or indirect result of the incidence or transmission of coronavirus, there are or will be insufficient border force officers to maintain adequate border security, and
(b)the Secretary of State has taken such other measures as are reasonably practicable to mitigate that risk.

(3)A direction under sub-paragraph (1) must specify—
(a)the operator to whom it is given,
(b)the relevant port operations which are to be suspended,
(c)the time at which the direction takes effect,
(d)the period of time for which the direction is to remain in effect (the “suspension period”), and
(e)any arrangements that must be made, or steps that must be taken, by the operator which are reasonably incidental to the direction.

Duration of suspension period

2(1)The suspension period specified in a direction under paragraph 1(1) may be no longer than six hours, subject as follows.

(2)If after giving a direction under paragraph 1(1) the Secretary of State considers that there is or will be a risk of the kind referred to in paragraph 1(2)(a) if the suspension period is not extended, the Secretary of State may before the expiry of the period extend it by notice in writing to the operator (and may do so more than once).

(3)The first notice under sub-paragraph (2) in relation to a suspension period may not extend the period for more than six hours from the time at which it would otherwise expire.

(4)A second or subsequent notice under sub-paragraph (2) in relation to a suspension period may not extend the period for more than twelve hours from the time at which it would otherwise expire.

Power to give consequential direction

3(1)Where the Secretary of State gives a direction under paragraph 1(1), the Secretary of State may also give a direction in writing to any person requiring the person to make such arrangements, or take such steps, as the Secretary of State considers appropriate in consequence of the direction under paragraph 1(1).

(2)A direction under sub-paragraph (1) must specify—
(a)the person to whom it is given, and
(b)the arrangements which the person is required to make or the steps which they are required to take,and be accompanied by the direction under paragraph 1(1) to which it relates.

(3)A direction under sub-paragraph (1) may, among other things—
(a)require a person to take action to secure the safe arrival of any vessel, aircraft, train or other conveyance or vehicle at an alternative port;
(b)specify a period of time for which the direction is to remain in effect.

Supplementary provisions

4 The Secretary of State must notify the Scottish Ministers, the Welsh Ministers and the Department for Infrastructure in Northern Ireland of any direction or notice given under this Schedule.

5 The Secretary of State may at any time revoke a direction or notice under this Schedule to any extent, having regard to the risk referred to in paragraph 1(2)(a).

Offences

6(1)A person commits an offence if the person fails without reasonable excuse to comply with a direction under this Schedule.

(2)A person has in particular a reasonable excuse for the purposes of sub-paragraph (1) if complying with the direction would cause the person to breach a duty to which the person is subject by virtue of any enactment.

(3)The duties referred to in sub-paragraph (2) include duties under a direction or instruction given by the Secretary of State under any of the following provisions—
(a)Schedule 3A to the Merchant Shipping Act 1995;
(b)Part 2 of the Aviation Security Act 1982;
(c)sections 118 and 119 of the Railways Act 1993;
(d)articles 13 to 16 of the Channel Tunnel (Security) Order 1994.

(4)A person guilty of an offence under this paragraph is liable on summary conviction—
(a)in England and Wales, to a fine or a term of imprisonment not exceeding 51 weeks or both,
(b)in Scotland, to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or both, or
(c)in Northern Ireland, to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or both.

(5)In relation to an offence committed before section 281(5) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 comes into force, the reference in sub-paragraph (4) to 51 weeks is to be read as a reference to 6 months.

Interpretation

7 In this Schedule—

“border force officer” means—
(a)a person appointed by the Secretary of State as an immigration officer under paragraph 1 of Schedule 2 to the Immigration Act 1971;
(b)a person designated as a general customs official or a customs revenue official under the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009 (see sections 3 and 11 of that Act);

“operator”, in relation to a port, means a person concerned in the management of the port;

“port” means—
(a)any port (including an airport, seaport or hoverport) in the United Kingdom;
(b)a place in the United Kingdom which is an authorised terminal control point for international services for the purposes of sections 11 and 12 of the Channel Tunnel Act 1987;

“relevant port operations” means any operations or functions carried out by an operator at a port in relation to—
(a)the arrival of any vessel, aircraft, train or other conveyance or vehicle into the United Kingdom;
(b)the entry into the United Kingdom of persons or things;

“suspension period” has the meaning given in paragraph 1(3)(d);

“vessel” has the same meaning as in the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 (see section 74 of that Act).

8 The provisions of this Schedule bind the Crown.

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