Motorists urged to be “sensible” amid “fuel shortage” in UK
As long queues form at forecourts across the country this morning despite pleas from government ministers, police have asked motorists to be “sensible” and to only contact them about criminal offences or large-scale disorder, amid the ongoing “fuel shortage” problem.
Some of the largest operators in the UK have already began to ration fuel, with pumps at some Tesco, Shell, BP and Esso sites closed, and EG Group setting a limit of £30 per customer at nearly 400 stations.
The crisis comes as a result of a shortage in HGV drivers, with the government considering lifting its visa restrictions to attract 5,000 foreign workers as a way to tackle the problem.
Transport secretary Grant Shapps denied that Brexit was the culprit in the UK’s shortage of lorry drivers, arguing that the split from the European Union has helped the government react.
He told BBC Today: “Not only are there very large and even larger shortages in other EU countries like Poland and Germany, which clearly can’t be to do with Brexit, but actually because of Brexit I’ve been able to change the law and alter the way our driving tests operate in a way I could not have done if we were still part of the EU.”
According to the President of the AA, Edmund King, motorists “panic-buying” fuel at petrol stations is further escalating the problem and contributing further to the shortage.
Mr King told BBC Breakfast the problem should improve within a few days if drivers just fill up “when they need it”, adding that “there is plenty of fuel at source” and that a shortage of lorry drivers had only been a “localised problem” earlier in the week.
In addition, Lincolnshire Police have addressed the problem on a local basis by posting the below Tweet:
We're asking motorists to help emergency services reach people in need and allow other motorists to make their journeys safely, following reports of long queues at some petrol stations this morning. Long queues can be a potential hazard to other road users https://t.co/w6rkLrbbCX pic.twitter.com/EWUPdOCnfG
— Lincolnshire Police (@LincsPolice) September 25, 2021
In a statement, the police force wrote about the “fuel shortage”: “We have received reports this morning of long queues at some petrol stations in the county.
“This is a potential hazard for vehicles making other journeys, and may cause difficulties for emergency services trying to reach people in need.
“While we appreciate that some people may be particularly keen to fill up their vehicles this weekend, we would respectfully ask motorists to be sensible when making judgements about joining a queue at a petrol station.
“If it is too long, consider returning at a different time.”