Europe

Petrol stations: Fights break out as pumps run dry across the nation

Fuel crisis: Petrol chief tells drivers to buy 'normal' quantities

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Desperate drivers were greeted by hastily written notes about the lack of fuel at garage after garage. As tempers frayed, other stations used security guards to ensure drivers queued politely after fights broke out in some areas, including one in Chichester, West Sussex, on Friday. Waiting motorists obstructed areas of central London yesterday, despite the fact insiders say Britain has “plenty of” fuel.

And a security guard was pictured advising drivers queueing at a station in Camberley, Surrey.

In Hackney, east London, two police cars were forced to cut in front of a long queue in an emergency move. The officers explained: “We had to jump the queue, our cars are empty and we can’t get to the depot in Romford to refill.”

Meanwhile, in south east London, an ambulance with flashing blue lights crashed into a waiting car.

The London Ambulance Service vehicle was responding to an emergency call-out when it was obstructed by a long queue at a Shell garage in Bromley. A video of the collision shows it slowing down in a bid to get around the blockade of vehicles, only to crash into the side of one of the cars.

Motorists are still panic-buying after warnings from BP and Esso about a lack of petrol deliveries.

While Petrol Retailers Association chairman Brian Madderson has said that the UK does have enough petrol, tanker driver shortages mean that “anywhere in between 50 per cent and 90 per cent” of his members’ forecourts are dry.

“And those that aren’t dry are partly dry and running out soon,” he added. “There is plenty of fuel in this country but it is in the wrong place for the motorists.”

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