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UK Will Allow Heavier Tankers to Avert Repeat of Fuel Shortages - BLOOMBERG

APRIL 03, 2024

(Bloomberg) -- The UK plans to relax weight limits for road fuel tankers in a move aimed at averting a repeat of the disruption to fuel supplies in 2021 that saw Britons queuing up at filling stations for hours.

In September 2021, service stations in some parts of England experienced long queues — and several ran out of fuel — as motorists raced to fill their tanks amid a shortage of fuel delivery-truck drivers.

The latest step will permit fuel tankers to operate at increased weights of up to 48 or 50 tons during periods of potential or acute fuel supply disruption. 

“The exemption will be temporary, lasting no longer than 4 to 5 weeks at a time,” the Department for Transport said in a joint statement with Department for Business and Trade, adding there are no plans to make the change permanent.

The move would add to measures already in place to avert possible fuel shortages - such as relaxing limitations on fuel tanker drivers’ hours, deploying the nation’s reserve tanker fleet, and using military tanker drivers to supplement civilian drivers.

The government will seek legal powers to make the necessary changes when parliamentary time allows, the statement said.


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