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Last Updated: Tuesday, 13 September 2005, 11:46 GMT 12:46 UK
'Don't panic' appeal to motorists
Fuel queue in Glasgow - picture by Paul Drury
Drivers queue for petrol in Glasgow on Monday evening
Motoring organisations and road haulage groups have urged motorists in Scotland to refrain from panic buying amid anxiety about fuel prices.

The RAC Foundation and Road Haulage Association in Scotland said a rush to the pumps would create a fuel shortage.

Hauliers stressed that while there may be protests over rising fuel costs at refineries elsewhere, there were no plans for demonstrations in Scotland.

Despite this, some filling stations are reported to have run out of fuel.

RAC head of campaigns Sue Nicholson said no-one wanted a repeat of the fuel crisis of 2000 when protests over prices led to a shortage.

Hauliers feel very strongly about the fact our counterparts in Europe pay 17.5p per mile less for fuel than we do
Phil Flanders
RHA Scotland

She said: "Motorists are trying to keep their tanks full but they will actually end up creating a fuel shortage by not sticking to their normal buying habits.

"Although there's no actual shortage at refineries, this kind of panic-buying at the forecourt is exactly the sort of thing that causes the problem."

Phil Flanders, director of the Road Haulage Association in Scotland, said: "It could cause us major problems. If they drain the pumps that would put huge pressure on our deliveries."

Resist pressure

On the issue of protests, he said: "I haven't heard of any plans for blockades or go-slows up here but that doesn't mean there aren't any plans under way.

"Hauliers feel very strongly about the fact our counterparts in Europe pay 17.5p per mile less for fuel than we do."

Environmental campaigners have urged Mr Brown to resist pressure for a cut in fuel duty.

No fuel sign
Pumps have been running dry in several places

Duncan McLaren, chief executive of Friends of the Earth Scotland, said: "This is one time that the chancellor must stand tough with fuel protesters.

"There's nothing to complain about, the cost of motoring hasn't been this low for over a decade - the real price of fuel is climate change."

Demand for petrol has been high at a number of stations across Scotland.

  • Judith McAteer, who works at an Esso garage in Wester Hailes, Edinburgh, said: "We've had pump rage on the forecourts with people beeping at each other and getting very irate indeed."

  • Crystal McDermott, a sales assistant at a Safeway garage in the west end of Glasgow, said: "Cars have actually been queuing out onto the roads. I've never seen anything like it before, it's been crazy."

  • Irene Muir, a member of staff at the Shell petrol station on Victoria Road, Glasgow, said Monday's panic buying was some of the worst she had seen in 16 years in the job.

    Speaking on Tuesday morning, she added: "It's madness, there are people queuing down Pollokshaws Road just now to get in."

  • Andrew Black, of the Gordon service station at Bridge of Don in Aberdeen, said: "It's been slightly busier, and it was busy yesterday but nothing exceptional."

Have you taken any pictures of panic-buying of petrol around Scotland? If so, send them to us at

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