Britain on Monday called on its military to be ready to aid the country’s ongoing fuel crisis, after worried Britons flocked to petrol stations over the weekend, with many running dry.
“A limited number of military tanker drivers should be prepared to intervene and deploy if necessary to stabilize fuel supplies,” the energy ministry said in a statement in the evening.
Petrol shortages in Britain got worse on Monday, which is still under the influence of “panic buying” from worried motorists.
Across the country, “out of gas” or “out of service” signs are popping up near gas pumps, with about 30% of giant BP stations affected by fuel shortages.
The crisis began in the middle of last week when a confidential report leaked to the government from fuel giant BP, which described the closure of a few dozen gas stations due to fuel shortages, as a PRA representative lamented.
Pandemic and Brexit at stake
Shopping started immediately across the country and most gas stations are now affected.
The shortage of petrol or diesel is initially due to a shortage of truck drivers who carry it from storage terminals to pumps.
The combined pandemic and Brexit caused truck drivers shortages have been brewing for several months, with Labor accusing Boris Johnson’s Tory government of ‘sleeping at the wheel’ and not intervening first. The lockdown prompted some European drivers to return to their home countries, and thousands of others were unable to pass their heavy goods vehicle licenses as test centers were closed for months. Brexit also complicates migration processes where European workers previously operated freely.
The government, however, denies the impact of Brexit in the current crisis, saying European countries are also facing driver shortages, but the UK’s road transport federation cites it as one of the main causes of the problem. According to a report published last month.
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