Drivers continue to panic-buy fuel at Hampshire petrol stations

BUSY Queues outside the Shell petrol station in Hilsea
BUSY Queues outside the Shell petrol station in Hilsea
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MOTORISTS continue to panic-buy at Hampshire petrol stations as fears grow over the fuel drivers dispute.

As reported, stations have been packed out since drivers in the Unite union voted in favour of a strike over conditions and safety.

Shell petrol station in London Road, Waterlooville, went through 6,000 litres of diesel and petrol in an hour this morning.

Jon Malley, chief inspector at Hampshire Constabulary’s Joint Operations Unit, said :’It is important for members of the public to bear in mind that members of the Unite union are still in talks with their employers, dedicated to finding a solution which will make strike action unnecessary.

‘There is currently no problem with fuel supplies and therefore we would urge all motorists to continue as normal with their fuel purchases – there is no need to stock up.

‘If industrial action does occur, the government is confident that they will continue to supply local petrol stations.

‘The communities of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight can be assured that we have full contingency plans prepared and are in a position to respond to ensure that peace is kept and disruption kept to a minimum if strike action does go ahead.’

‘We also have plans in hand to ensure that if it does occur, police and other emergency services and other critical local agencies can maintain their normal response service across the two counties.’

Employee Hannah Thresher, 21, said: ‘It’s been absolutely crazy.

‘We had to put cones out temporarily to stop more cars coming in because we only had 2,000 litres left for the rest of the day.

‘I don’t think its necessary for people to be out panic buying like this.

‘One person came in and filled up three of their cars. It’s crazy.’

Tesco petrol station, in Solent Road, Havant, reported having big queues but stocks of fuel have remained steady because deliveries arrived earlier this morning and last night.

Jet service station, in Portsmouth Road, Cosham, has put up a sign which tells customers that there isn’t any diesel left. A delivery is expected tomorrow.

About 550 customers a day have been filling up at Milton Road Service Station, Milton, since Monday - compared to about 250 on an average day.

Manager Lee Richardson said: ‘It’s been really busy since Monday. Cars having been queuing back onto the main road.

‘We’ve taken three times our normal fuel sales.