County welcomes tankers but motorists continue to queue for fuel

A tanker arrives at Esso garage in Norwich

A tanker arrives at Esso garage in Norwich - Credit: SUBMITTED

Motorists across the county are welcoming the arrival of tankers restocking fuel at filling stations - but long queues are continuing to plague the pumps. 

Many forecourts across Norfolk were forced to close yesterday (Saturday, September 25) as stocks became depleted by unprecedented numbers of drivers filling up their vehicles. 

Despite reassurances from the government that fuel was “in ample supply”, long queues were seen at a number of filling stations with individuals desperate to get petrol and diesel. 

Transport secretary, Grant Shapps, said if motorists only fill up their cars with fuel when needed, then there would be no need for the type of queues currently being seen at petrol pumps.

Speaking to Sky News today (Sunday, September 26), the cabinet minister said: "I think the important thing to know is that within the country, at the six refineries and 47 storage facilities, there is plenty of fuel, there is no shortage of fuel within the country.

"So the most important thing is actually that if people carry on as they normally would and fill up their cars when they normally would, then you won't have queues and you won't have shortages at the pump either.

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"It is not like we don't have fuel in the country, we do need to just ensure people are filling up when they need to fill up rather than thinking, 'I better go and fill up now just in case I need it next week or the week after'."

Emergency services and key workers were also affected, with one student paramedic's post going viral urging people to "be kind, be caring, be thoughtful”. 

And while Norfolk woke to similar scenes this morning (Sunday, September 26), a number of stations have received supplies of fuel. 

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In Norwich, there were queues for the pumps at Tesco on Blue Boar Lane, with staff in hi-viz jackets marshalling drivers at around 7.30am. 

At Esso on Dereham Road, eager drivers queued and watched on as a tanker made a delivery. Staff were clearing drivers from the forecourt as they waited for fuel to become available. 

On Plumstead Road East, emergency services vehicles were seen waiting for fuel at the BP, with the queue for refilling snaking down the busy stretch of road. 

The filling station at Asda on Hall Road remains shut, as well as there being no fuel at the Shell garage on Ipswich Road. 

There have been queues at Tesco Harford Bridge since 8am. 

And at Earlham Fiveways there is fuel again but long queues have stretched round the roundabout.

Sainsburys filling station on Queen's Road remains shut and there is no fuel at the BP on Martineau Lane or its branch on Hall Road at Tuckswood roundabout.

At 11.20am First buses tweeted that its 25 and 21 blue line services were diverting at Morrisons at Riverside due to the queues at the petrol stations.

The company also said its 23, 23A and 23B red line services towards Heartsease were diverting via Hilary Avenue due to queuing for the Plumstead Road petrol station.

The bus company said its services towards the city were running as normal.

Elsewhere in the county, Woodrow Garage at Cawston, between Reepham and Aylsham, also remains closed. 

In Lowestoft, First Norwich buses said due to the queues at the Tesco petrol station near the roundabout, the service 1/1A/X1 would not be stopping there.

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