David Cameron reassures Britain on fuel shortage issue

British Prime Minister David Cameron has taken it upon himself to convince motorists that there is no likelihood of petrol shortage despite an impending strike by tank drivers. This comes after a ghastly incident, in which a mother received 40 per cent burns and is in hospital in critical but safe condition following a fire accident while decanting stockpiled petrol from a jerry can in her kitchen in York. The victim Diane Hill, 46 was one of the several to store petrol fearing a run out after Francis Maude, the Cabinet Office Minister, had advocated “a bit of extra fuel in a jerry can in the garage is a sensible precaution to take”. The advisory has drawn the ire of several Labor Leaders who rooted for his head, holding him responsible for the kitchen fire mishap.

Describing the accident as “a desperate incident and a terrible thing”, Cameron insisted that the government and petrol companies are doing their best to ease the situation in the face of people queuing up petrol at petrol stations in several areas. This has resulted in a shortage of fuel. Expressing sympathy to the Hill family, Cameron said “the fuel companies are working flat out to resupply petrol stations” and that “It is frustrating, I know, when petrol stations have queues. Everything that can be done is being done, but it will take some time.”

The Department of Energy and Climate Change on its part too discouraged people from storing up fuel supplies, by adding that “there is no urgency to top up your tank – a strike will not happen over Easter”. Cameron too welcomed the ‘Unite’ (the union representing the truck drivers) announcement that there would be no strike during Easter holidays. Unite proposes to enter into ‘substantive talks’ with the haulage companies to amicably resolve the issue. Appealing to Unite to withdraw their strike Cameron stressed “It is vitally important [Unite] enters these talks on Monday constructively. The most constructive thing they could do would be to call off the strike entirely,”

Cameron’s stance on the whole issue was less provocative than that of his colleague Maude on the truckers strike.

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