Portsmouth petrol: Live updates petrol panic buying at BP, Shell and Tesco causes disruption in Portsmouth

TENSIONS are spilling over as a fight has broken out at a forecourt in Portsmouth amid a rush to get fuel.

By Ben Fishwick
Saturday, 25th September 2021, 12:00 pm

The incident happened at Shell, in Hilsea, as two van drivers clashed on Saturday morning.

Sainsbury’s in Farlington has put up a sign saying ‘no fuel’ today.

Yesterday the BP Petrol stations in Park Lane, Bedhampton and Havant Road, Emsworth, have run out of fuel and had to close their forecourts – and now the pumps at the BP in Eastern Road, Portsmouth, have also shut along with the site in West Street, Portchester.

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BP petrol stations in Havant and Emsworth shut forecourts as fuel shortage hits ...

It comes as transport secretary Grant Shapps yesterday urged motorists not to ‘panic buy’ fuel.

A lack of HGV drivers has sparked a fuel crisis, with BP closing the forecourts of a ‘handful’ of petrol stations over the last day.

Mr Shapps said: ‘I’ll move heaven and Earth to do anything that’s required to make sure that lorries carry on moving our goods and services and petrol around the country.’

No fuel at Sainsbury's in Farlington, Portsmouth, on September 25. Picture: Richard Lemmer

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Updates on Saturday as petrol stations run out of fuel and queues start at other garages in Portsmouth

Last updated: Saturday, 25 September, 2021, 15:42

  • A fight broke out at the Shell garage in Hilsea over fuel queues
  • Paramedics have struggled to get fuel despite the warning not to panic buy

AA say plenty of fuel at source

The president of the AA has insisted that there ‘is plenty of fuel at the source’ and no need to panic buy.

Speaking to the BBC, Edmund King said: ‘We were in discussions with Government ministers last night and we talked to the major fuel companies, and we can reiterate there is not a problem with supply at the source.’

He continued: ‘Earlier in the week, there were some problems with the supply chain, as we know, due to a shortage of some lorry drivers, but that was only a localised problem.’

Mr King added: ‘Frankly, what has exacerbated it is people going out and filling up when they really don’t need to.

‘If you think about it, 30 million cars out there, if they’ve all got half a tank (and) if they all rush out to fill up the rest of the tank and the tank is about 60 litres, that will put a strain on the system.’

‘I didn’t think it would be this bad'

Jason Foreman, 23, and partner Taylor Hutton, 22, are at the Shell garage in Eastern Road, Portsmouth. They are driving from Southsea to Jason’s home town of Peterborough - a 160 mile trip and they have 142 miles-worth of petrol in their tank. Jason said: ‘We have been here 35 minutes. I didn’t think it would be this bad. ‘I think it’s been made worse by panic buying.’ He added: ‘I don’t think the government should be bringing in foreign drivers. There should be more incentives for drivers already here.’

Shortage of drivers - not fuel

It’s easy to forget these problems are not being caused by a shortage in fuel.

There’s a shortage of drivers delivering to a small number of petrol stations across Britain - and the panic buying is creating the queues we’re seeing.

This report is from the PA news agency:

The prospect of a temporary visa scheme to fix the lorry driver shortage has been met with both frustration and relief by industry figures and opposition politicians.

With an announcement expected over the weekend, Downing Street sources said the scheme, which reports suggest will temporarily lift visa restrictions for foreign drivers, is to be a ‘short-term solution’ to ease pressure on deliveries in the run-up to Christmas.

The Financial Times and the Telegraph reported up to 5,000 temporary visas could be granted for HGV drivers while the FT also said a similar number would be approved for food processing workers, especially in the poultry industry.

Queues at the BP station in, Broom Way, Lee-on-the-Solent

BP, Broom Way, Lee-on-the-Solent

And here’s what Richard is referring to - ‘sorry no fuel’ sign at Sainsbury’s in Farlington

Our reporter Richard has spotted long queues at the Shell station in Farlington, Portsmouth, while on his way back covering something else

Tesco Fratton one-way system

Tesco Fratton has put in a one-way system around the car park.

The queue for fuel is winding up and down the parking lanes, and there's a worker there directing the traffic for shoppers needing groceries or fuel

Saturday - demand continues

We’re covering the petrol queues live again on Saturday - stay here for the latest updates

Demand is continuing in Portsmouth - with queues shown here at Shell in Hilsea, where a fight broke out earlier this morning

Portsmouth drivers at Shell garage reveal frustration over 'panicking'

Drivers in Hilsea have expressed their exasperation as motorists rush to buy fuel amid a panic over supply shortages.

Hundreds of people have been queueing all day to fill up at the Shell outlet in London Road, as garages across the area struggle to cope with soaring demand and dwindling fuel.

Now drivers stuck on the forecourt in Hilsea have told The News people need to stop panicking.

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