Fuel shortages: Tentative signs of stabilisation says Grant Schapps
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Grant Shapps had previously dismissed attempts to find a link between Britain quitting the European Union and the disruption motorists and consumers have been experiencing in recent weeks. But on the fifth day of Britons queueing en masse outside petrol stations to secure fuel amid fears of a shortage due to HGV drivers unavailability, the Transport Secretary was forced to backtrack on his comment. Speaking to the BBC, Mr Shapps said: “Brexit I hear mentioned a lot, and it no doubt will have been a factor.
“On the other hand, it has actually helped us to change rules to be able to test more drivers more quickly.
“So, it has actually worked in both ways.”
Only on Friday, Mr Shapps said attempts to find a link between the shortages and Brexit were “wrong”.
He said: “I have seen people point to Brexit as the culprit here when in fact they are wrong.
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Mr Shapps said there were some hints the situation was easing as reserves at some gas stations had been replenished.
“We’re starting to see very tentative signs of stabilisation which won’t yet be reflected in the queues,” he told reporters.
“The sooner we all return to our normal buying habits, the quicker this gets resolved – and I do appeal to the public to do that. In particular, no more water bottles at petrol stations: it’s dangerous and not helpful.”
The Government announced on Monday it was putting troops on standby to drive petrol tankers as filling stations in many parts of the country continued to run dry.
But with anger building at the long queues faced by motorists, some senior Tories urged the Government to go further and start actively using the military to restore public confidence.
More to follow…
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