Almost 200 Military tanker personnel, 100 of which are drivers, will be deployed from Monday to provide temporary support as part of the government’s action to relieve pressure on petrol stations suffering with supply and demand fuel issues.
The government claims demand for fuel has stabilised throughout the week and more fuel is now being delivered than is being sold although it is admitted that some parts of the country still face challenges. such as in the south east.
Thanet is still experiencing issues with queues forming at forecourts as drivers attempt to refuel. This is causing backlogs on some roads and has disrupted bus routes. The panic to buy means fuel at forecourts is being dispensed at a faster rate than usual and so running out before the next scheduled delivery.
A joint statement issued last week by the fuel industry said fuel supplies at UK refineries and terminals remain high and they asked the public to continue to purchase fuel as normal.
RT @StagecoachSE: #THANET Loop(52) is diverting via Northumberland and Zion Place due to congestion by Warwick Rd petrol station. The 8A’s Northumberland and Sweyn Rd Sorry for any inconvenience caused. pic.twitter.com/ATxxEQAHr4
— Stagecoach South East (@StagecoachSE) October 2, 2021
Staff at Sainsbury’s in Westwood and at St Lawrence garage are among those who have been praised for ensuring as smooth an operation as possible despite being on the receiving end of some abuse.
The Government is also introducing a bespoke scheme allowing up to 300 fuel tanker drivers to the UK on a temporary basis who will be able to arrive immediately (subject to immigration checks, and endorsement from BEIS) and stay to work until the end of March 2022
Measures also include some 4,700 food haulage drivers who will arrive from late October and leave by 28 February 2022 and 5,500 poultry workers who will also arrive from late October and be able stay up to 31 December 2021
The government says the introduction of temporary, time-limited visa measures, does not detract from the commitment to upskill and increase the wages of domestic labour.
There is also to be an immediate increase in HGV testing and new skills bootcamps to train up to 4,000 more people to become HGV drivers.