School buses cancelled as more stations run out of petrol and diesel as Aylesbury fuel crisis worsens

The hunt for fuel is getting more desperate by the minute in town.

Tuesday, 28th September 2021, 10:48 am
Updated Tuesday, 28th September 2021, 10:50 am

The fuel crisis is worsening in Aylesbury as more and more stations run out of diesel and petrol.

Tesco on Tring Road was the last station standing yesterday evening (September 27), with motorists facing a 45-minute queue to get diesel or petrol.

This morning latest reports suggest that Tesco station has ran out, but petrol is available at the Tesco Extra in Broadfield Retail Park, but queues start from the McDonald's located 0.3 miles away.

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Queues outside Esso Garage in Aylesbury on Sunday September 26 photo from Emma Dover

Residents have reported 45 plus minute waits to get their hands on precious fuels to keep their cars running.

The fuel shortage is now impacting education services with fears growing that it will soon stop key workers supporting those in urgent need.

Bucks Council Leader Martin Tett announced the following services weren't running this morning, tweeting: "URGENT. We have been advise this morning that the following school bus routes cannot run due to fuel shortages Vale Travel MSGF917 Thomas Freemantle Red-Line 643,655,671,814,815,946,945, 850.

"We’re working closely with the operators and schools affected, Please do not #PanicBuy."

Queues going back as far as McDonald's to reach Applegreen Station this morning (September 28)

The 671 buses into Aylesbury Grammar and Sir Henry Floyd Grammar School have been cancelled, as well as the 850 to Waddesdon School.

The council has provided a full list of cancelled services here, it includes routes to schools in High Wycombe and Buckingham as well.

Other motorists travelled to nearby Haddenham and Thame to fill their cars up.

Queues formed this morning at Applegreen Station on Bicester Road in anticipation of an 8am delivery this morning, the station was cordoned off to allow an incoming tanker access to the garage.

Eventually, the tanker arrived at 09:45, but queues have not eased one bit and desperate motorists still face an anxious exhaustive wait to gain vital fuel.

The government says the fuel shortage has been triggered by people panic buying rather than a long term supply issue.

Aylesbury MP Rob Butler urged his constituents to only buy fuel if they really needed it and reiterated the government message on Twitter yesterday.

Mr Butler said: "I know many people in Aylesbury are concerned about fuel availability. Just been briefed by Transport [email protected]

"More supplies are on their way, but please only fill up when you need to, to ensure there's enough for emergency vehicles, NHS & care staff & school buses.

"Important to stress that there is no shortage of fuel at refineries. Government is taking urgent steps, including relaxing competition law so oil companies can work together, increasing number of HGV tests and introducing temporary visas for overseas drivers."

Yesterday, the Bucks Council Leader announced an emergency meeting had been organised to assess what could be done to tackle the fuel shortage.

The meeting was called by the council CEO with an emphasis being placed on ensuring key workers had enough fuel to get to complete their duties.

Later the Council Leader, said: "No easy answer to current fuel shortages caused by panic buying. The council does not have the powers to ration fuel sales or limit them to key workers. We are working with others across the public sector to assess the impact and look at options."

Latest national reports suggest the national army is ready to be deployed to efficiently deliver fuel across the country.

Hundreds of army tankers might be sent across the country to quickly restock petrol stations in areas most in need of a refill, before the crisis worsens.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said: “The men and women of our armed forces stand ready to alleviate the transport pressures where they are felt most.

“That is why I have authorised their increased preparedness so they are ready to respond if needed.”

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng, who issued the Military Aid to the Civil Authorities request, added: “While the fuel industry expects demand will return to its normal levels in the coming days, it’s right that we take this sensible, precautionary step.

“The UK continues to have strong supplies of fuel, however we are aware of supply chain issues at fuel station forecourts and are taking steps to ease these as a matter of priority.

“If required, the deployment of military personnel will provide the supply chain with additional capacity as a temporary measure to help ease pressures caused by spikes in localised demand for fuel.”

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps announced the extension to ADR driver licences, which allow drivers to transport goods such as fuel.

He added: “Even though the current network of tanker drivers is capable of delivering all the fuel we need we have taken the additional step of asking the army to help plug the gap, whilst new HGV drivers come on stream thanks to all the other measures we’ve already taken.”

Shadow defence secretary John Healey said the move is an “admission of failure from a Government that continues to rely on the Army to bail it out”.

“The Government have been too slow to act despite months of warnings from across the sector,” the Labour MP added.

In an attempt to alleviate the crisis, Mr Johnson announced at the weekend plans to issue 5,000 temporary three-month visas to foreign drivers.