French authorities warned Thursday of a spike in migrants attempting the dangerous crossing of the English Channel by boat to reach Britain, which could reflect fears the border will be shut after Brexit.
Maritime police rescued 18 people in two separate rescue operations overnight, bringing to 30 the number of attempted crossings so far this year.
"But 17 of those are since October," said Captain Ingrid Parrot, a spokeswoman for the French maritime police based in Cherbourg.
"We're dealing with a situation that's getting worse," she said, adding that France was reinforcing its patrols in the Channel.
Britain's interior ministry said Thursday that 14 people had been rescued overnight, bringing the total number to 78 in the last two weeks.