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Old Oct 1st 2016, 9:05 pm   #1
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Default Border Crossing Hassle

I go back and forth between Hungary and Croatia with all sorts of stuff but about a week ago I happened to be entering Hungary with my hydraulic log splitter, electric chainsaw and about ten logs, each around a metre long. This time they asked if I have paperwork for the logs. I said that I don't need paperwork to take them from one EU country to another EU country. They replied that Croatia is not part of the Schengen zone but I can't see what that has to do with it. They also made me do a breath test, the second time in only a few days. They did let me through eventually but could anyone here confirm that I don't need paperwork to bring logs from Croatia to Hungary?
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Old Oct 2nd 2016, 9:38 am   #2
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Default Re: Border Crossing Hassle

I'm not sure about Croatia but in Hungary you need permission to cut out trees and you are supposed to carry the paperwork both when you are working in the forest and when you transport the wood on the road. This is an attempt to reduce the amount of stolen wood. It has been estimated that in Hungary 30% of the firewood burnt is stolen. It is not just people nicking a car boot full but IFA lorries going into the forests and stealing tons at a time.

Whilst the EU has free movement of goods and services this does not mean that you don't have to prove you have legal title to any thing you may be transporting. Austria and Hungary are part of the Schengen zone but the Austrian police regularly stop our ethnic friends in their white vans travelling back to Hungary loaded with second-hand goods for the markets. The police require them to show legal title (receipts) for the items carried. Again an attempt to stop theft from garages and alike.

And yes you are right part of the Schengen zone or not has nothing to do with proving ownership of any goods. The breath test was an opportunistic test which increase in number around grape harvest / Christmas etc.
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Old Oct 2nd 2016, 12:54 pm   #3
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Default Re: Border Crossing Hassle

Thanks Peter. So how would I get paperwork for trees I cut down on my own land? Last winter the majority of what I burned in Hungary was obtained that way as I had previously got a tree surgeon to do some work and I had cut up a big walnut which blew down in a bad storm.
In Croatia there is a general permission to remove fallen or dead wood from the forests but I don't suppose anyone would provide a bit of paper to that effect. I suppose I just need to buy some logs and get a receipt and then keep that in the car for use whenever challenged in the future.
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Old Oct 2nd 2016, 1:14 pm   #4
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Default Re: Border Crossing Hassle

Quote:
Originally Posted by fidobsa View Post
Thanks Peter. So how would I get paperwork for trees I cut down on my own land?
It depends upon the location of the trees, internal or external (to the village) forest, national park etc. Start with the local council.

Last edited by Peter_in_Hungary; Oct 2nd 2016 at 1:16 pm.
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