- Title: Fuel shortages driven by panic buying, says UK environment minister
- Date: 27th September 2021
- Summary: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (SEPTEMBER 26, 2021) (REUTERS) CARS LINING UP TO REFUEL AT FUEL STATION
- Embargoed: 11th October 2021 12:20
- Keywords: HGV drivers fuel fuel shortages petrol
- Location: LONDON AND KIDDERMINSTER, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
- City: LONDON AND KIDDERMINSTER, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
- Country: United Kingdom
- Topics: Europe,Economic Events
- Reuters ID: LVA005EWHWL6V
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: People in Britain should buy petrol as usual, environment minister George Eustice said on Monday (September 27), adding there was no shortage of fuel but problems were being caused by consumers panic buying fuel they didn't need.
He also said Britain has no plans yet to get the army to drive trucks to deliver fuel to petrol stations after a shortage of drivers strained supply chains.
Eustice said Ministry of Defence trainers were being drafted in to help clear a backlog of heavy goods vehicle (HGV) tests.
The minister said conditions needed to be improved for long-distance truck drivers.
Up to 90% of British fuel stations ran dry across major English cities on Monday after panic buying deepened a supply chain crisis triggered by a shortage of truckers that retailers are warning could batter the world's fifth-largest economy.
A dire post-Brexit shortage of lorry drivers emerging after the COVID-19 pandemic has sown chaos through British supply chains in everything from food to fuel, raising the spectre of disruptions and price rises in the run up to Christmas.
Meanwhile, cars could be seen queuing outside fuel stations in London on Sunday night.
Fuel customers in Kidderminster, England said on Monday they started looking for fuel from 5 o'clock, calling local fuel stations and driving around town.
Hauliers, gas stations and retailers warned that there were no quick fixes, however, as the shortfall of truck drivers - estimated to be around 100,000 - was so acute, and because transporting fuel demands additional training and licensing.
(Production: Amy Pollock, Liliana Ciobanu)
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