Drivers have reported empty pumps for both petrol and diesel in the Southeast of England. Here’s how to check if the nearest station to you has the fuel you need
Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Motorists are continuing to struggle with fuel problems this Spring, including high prices and some shortages at some pumps.
Long queues of vehicles similar to those seen at the end of 2021 when there was a shortage have not been seen, but some stations have been reported to be without fuel.
Prices are high for cars at the moment due to a range of factors such as already high demand made worse by the war in Ukraine, but the UK is reported to have enough resources to manage and keep clear of future shortages despite the soaring prices.
Some motorists have reported shortages of petrol or diesel at some stations in the country this week, meaning that some stations have been affected, including in the Southeast.
How do I check if there is diesel near me?
One of the best ways to check if a fuel station near you has a good fuel supply of diesel is through Google Maps.
Make sure your location is turned on, search for petrol stations near you and click on the nearest ones.
Google has a tool that lets you know how busy that station is at one time and the busier it is, the higher the bar.
A high bar may indicate that the station is busier because it has fuel in, though this doesn’t take into account factors like the local population.
Petrol Prices compare the cheapest prices of fuel stations near you and you can first check to see where the cheapest fuel is, before seeing if that station is busy.
The app Waze also has a feature that lets you know how bad the traffic is nearby, so you may want to see if there is heavy traffic in case you are worried about running out or if this shows that a station has fuel where somewhere else might not.
Why is there a diesel shortage?
Recent disruptions to diesel and petrol pumps in the Southeast of England may have been caused by climate protests.
Climate campaign groups Just Stop Oil and Extinction Rebellion have been targeting supply lines of oil in the UK.
One activist said: “It seems as though many people are struggling to get their petrol, and that’s because we believe the Just Stop Oil coalition are currently succeeding in their aims to block supplies of petrol and oil in the UK.”
There was already a problem with prices due to global demand being high and this was made worse by the war in Ukraine.
Much of Europe gets a large portion of its gas and oil from Russia, but sanctions mean that this is being phased out. This is not as much a problem for the UK, which gets around 8% of its total imports of oil from the country and it has committed to phasing out all Russian oil by the end of the year.
However, Europe is far more reliant on Russia for energy and this means that if countries like Germany turn away from Russia, which accounts for around a third of their oil supply, they will need to compete with the rest of the world for oil.
Turning away from Russian energy means there is less of it to go round elsewhere, in certain circumstances.
When competition is higher, there is more demand and prices go up.