PANIC purchase causes “really serious problems” at gas stations, with at least half reporting they are out of gas, industry spokesman says as drivers battle in lines waiting at Somerset pumps.
Demand at a gas station rose 500% on Saturday compared to last week, with oil companies prioritizing highways due to a shortage of specialist tanker drivers, the Petrol Retailers Association (PRA) said.
Queues at stations continued for a third day on Sunday, including at the Esso on the Wirral Park shopping development in Glastonbury, watched by your County Official Gazette, despite assurances from Secretary of Transportation Grant Shapps that there is “a lot” of fuel available.
But Brian Madderson, chairman of the PRA, said the government “was reluctant to admit” that supplies were stuck at refineries or storage depots and not being delivered to courtyards due to current supply problems.
Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s The World This Weekend, Mr Madderson said the creation of 5,000 foreign truck driver visas, announced by the government on Saturday, was unlikely to ease pressures on gasoline in the “ultra-short term”.
“We might see some benefits later in the fall when the drivers show up and start working, but in the very short term this panic buy has caused very serious problems,” he said.
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“I spoke to many of our members this morning. They serve main roads, rural areas, urban roads, and between 50 and 90% of their plots are currently dry, and those that are not are partly dry and soon run out.
With motorway pumps weak, the association’s outgoing president said oil companies are “giving priority to motorway service areas”, forcing drivers to “flock” to the country’s main highways to make the shift. full.
“One of them mentioned to me that yesterday there was a 500% increase in demand compared to a week ago, which is quite extraordinary,” he added.
“There is a lot of fuel in this country but it is not in the right place for motorists.
“It’s still in the terminals and the refineries, and the amount they can now ship and deliver to the forecourt is limited by two things.
“One, the availability of equipment, the tankers themselves. These are specialized tankers capable of delivering in pods, in these large trucks, a wide variety of fuels to the forecourt.
“There is a finite number of them and there is obviously a finite number of trained conductors, and that’s the problem, that this number of finished conductors has been reduced.”