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Tanker drivers wanted.....urgently


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As expected tanker drivers from the EU have not been beating a path to our door begging to come here.


Just 27 drivers have applied for the temporary visa.......and we need 5,000. The report is from The Times.



Supply crisis: just 27 fuel tanker drivers from EU apply for emergency visas


Only 27 fuel tanker drivers from the EU have applied to work in Britain under the government’s emergency scheme to tackle the petrol crisis, ministers have been told.


It means only a fraction of the 300 visas available for HGV drivers in the fuel industry are set to be taken up in a setback to efforts to replenish supplies.


The failure to identify more drivers has infuriated Downing Street after it agreed to the demand by oil companies to fast-track applications.


The figure calls into question wider plans to recruit a further 4,700 haulage drivers from later this month to alleviate the pressure on deliveries before Christmas. They will be issued work visas lasting until March.


One source said ministers had agreed to the fuel scheme only after being told by the industry that it had the numbers ready to fill the 300 posts.


They added that the failure so far to recruit more drivers was likely to lead to further delays in restocking service stations and might force the government to rely on army assistance for longer.


Yesterday there were signs of improvement at the pumps but still about one in five petrol stations in London and the southeast were out of fuel.


The Petrol Retailers Association said yesterday that a fifth of service stations in London and the southeast were without fuel. Just over half had both petrol and diesel. Last week the vast majority of petrol stations in parts of Britain were out of fuel.


David Charman, who runs Parkfoot Garage in West Malling in Kent, told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme that drivers were running out of fuel while queuing for the pumps. “This is not panic-buying any more, this is people that have waited as long as they possibly can and now they have no fuel,” he said. “We’re having to push cars that are in the queue.”



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