Brexit, Corona and no more truck drivers – the UK supply chain is on very shaky legs. At 90 percent of the petrol stations there is neither petrol nor diesel. Long queues and aggressiveness are the result. Now soldiers have to replace the missing truck drivers.
In Great Britain, the military has been involved in dealing with the fuel crisis since Monday. Around 200 members of the army help to transport petrol and diesel to filling stations. “Operation Escalin” focuses on London and south-east England, as a government spokesman said. The situation there is not stabilizing as quickly as in other areas.
The soldiers were trained by a company specializing in fuel logistics in Essex. “We are working closely with the industry to increase fuel stocks,” said the government spokesman. “There are signs that average UK gas station supplies are improving as demand continues to stabilize.”
According to the Petrol Retailers Association, there are no longer any supply problems in large parts of northern and central England as well as in Scotland. In London and south-east England, however, a good five petrol stations (22 percent) were still without fuel, and many of them only had petrol or diesel. Prime Minister Boris Johnson called the military operation a precaution on Sunday.
Like many other countries, including Germany, Great Britain suffers from a blatant shortage of truck drivers. However, tougher immigration rules after Brexit have exacerbated the UK. Under the impression of empty gas pumps and long lines in front of gas stations, the government made a U-turn and approved work visas for up to 5,000 foreign drivers, which should be valid until the end of February.