THE Government has finally admitted to a shortage of fuel at the pumps. Last week they denied that a shortfall of 100,000 HGV drivers had caused a crisis. Foreign truckers would not be allowed to help because HGV driving was not viewed as highly skilled enough to merit a special visa.
This ideological position gave way to the ‘concession’ that 5,000 ‘foreign’ truckers would be granted a temporary visa until Christmas Eve. Then, having ‘saved’ our Christmas, these much-needed foreigners would be sent packing. Even if they all come to bail us out, 100,000 minus 5,000 still leaves 95,000 – what a huge difference that will make.
Last week the Government insisted the petrol crisis would be over long before the Army was needed. We now learn that 150 Army drivers qualified to drive petrol tankers may be called up within days.
Ninety-five thousand minus 150 still only makes 94,850. It is unforgiveable that these drivers are only now being given specialist training. Plans were put in place during the last fuel crisis to ensure military drivers could drive petrol tankers if needed. But the Government abandoned those plans, adding to the present chaos.
Refusing to give key workers priority access to fuel hits health, education and council services even harder.
The utter shambles shows incompetence. Out of touch Ministers hide behind accusing ordinary citizens of ‘panic buying.’ However, those who rely on their vehicles for work are sensibly planning ahead. The panic is in fact caused by lack of foresight at the very top.
From: David Craggs, Goldthorpe, South Yorkshire.
IN a modern ‘first world’, well-educated society, like ours is supposed to be, aren’t we entitled to expect the government of the day to be knowledgeable and forward-thinking?
Obviously yes. But we have been well and truly let down by ours, as has been shown in recent weeks. Didn’t any of the ‘brain boxes’ within government anticipate that Brexit would make it difficult, if not impossible, for foreign workers to stay in this country and continue their work? Didn’t anyone anticipate that such workers would simply return home?
Their returning home has resulted in not only the destruction of millions of pounds’ worth of fruit and vegetables in our fields, but also our shortage of HGV drivers to deliver goods round the country, including petrol to our pumps.