Industry federation call for talks on petrol tanker strike
In a letter to Energy Secretary Ed Davey, Brian Madderson of the
Retail Motor Industry Federation (RMI) predicted that fuel shortages
caused by last week's panic buying could continue until at least the
Easter weekend and possibly beyond as petrol stations struggle to
He also said the confidence of independent fuel retailers had been "abruptly shaken" by the Government's "perceived inability" to manage the issue of a potential strike by tanker drivers.
Mr Madderson's comments came as new research revealed that three in four people (77%) believe the Government was responsible for causing unnecessary panic over the ongoing dispute.
Research commissioned by ITV News at Ten also found that 72% think David Cameron was wrong to advise people to top up their fuel, while just 12% of the 2,000 adults interviewed by ComRes agreed that the Government has handled the strike threat in a responsible way.
Fuel tanker drivers and their employers are due to hold substantive talks on Wednesday in an attempt to resolve the dispute which has flared over safety and working conditions.
Conciliation service Acas, which will chair the meeting, said it had held briefings with the Unite union and the seven distribution firms involved in the row over the past few days.
In his letter to the Government, Mr Madderson wrote: "Independent petrol retailers across the UK have had their confidence abruptly shaken by the Government's perceived inability to manage the issue of a potential industrial dispute by Unite affiliated tanker drivers.
"It is now very clear to the public and to the media that Government created a crisis out of a concern, with some ill-conceived recommendations and complete lack of engagement with industry to prepare for possible strike action."
He also stated that the UK's energy resilience for fuel required "a complete overhaul" with regard to retail forecourts.
That's some guestlist! Stunning images show huge dynastic wedding between Ultra-Orthodox Jewish families which attracted 25,000 guests
Emergency landing at Heathrow sparks further controversy over London airport capacity
Two bailed after arrest over Woolwich attack Twitter comments
Exclusive: Woolwich killings suspect Michael Adebolajo was inspired by cleric banned from UK after urging followers to behead enemies of Islam
Men arrested after RAF jet is scrambled to escort Pakistan Airlines passenger plane to Stansted
- 1 Liam Gallagher slams Daft Punk: 'I could have written Get Lucky in an hour'
- 2 What, let gays get married? We must be bonkers
- 3 'Something passed underneath us, quite close': Airbus A320 has close encounter with UFO
- 4 Lord of the Sings: Sir Christopher Lee, 91, to release heavy metal album
- 5 Two bailed after arrest over Woolwich attack Twitter comments
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Nook is donating eReaders to volunteers at high-need schools and participating in exclusive events throughout the campaign.
Get the latest on The Evening Standard's campaign to get London's children reading.
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.