I am running low on petrol and I refuse to go on a panic run to;
a) find a garage without a queue
b) find a garage without a queue and that has petrol
c) find a garage without a queue, that has petrol and who hasn’t hiked the price.
Maude and Cameron have not assisted in reassuring people that there is no need to go and panic buy…their behaviour has been nothing more than scaremongering.
In a midmorning interview with Sky News, Mr Maude said that people should not be “rushing around in a mad dash”, but confirmed that the Government did want drivers to make plans in case of a strike.
Mr Maude said: “As and when, when it makes sense, a bit of extra fuel in a jerry can in the garage is a sensible precaution to take. We want people to have the chance, at their own time, when it makes sense to them, in their own arrangements, to deal with things in a sensible way.” Sensible…hardly
Cameron, Davey and Penning then did their bit to reinforce the need to panic buy by suggesting that people keep their tanks topped up on a regular basis, and before the Easter break.
Opposition leader Ed Miliband said: “The prime minister is presiding over a shambles on petrol.” He was being generous.
Labour has called on the government to apologise for causing a “shambles on petrol”, as ministers insisted their call for motorists to top up fuel tanks ahead of a possible tanker drivers’ strike was just sensible planning.
He said in a statement: “In a delicate situation which demanded statesmanship, the government showed partisanship. They made a crude decision to play politics with petrol without regard for the consequence.”
Downing Street has said ministers are not embarking on a political operation. However, Conservative party officials distributed leaflets showing that tanker drivers earn up to £47,500, considerably more than a staff sergeant bomb disposal expert in Afghanistan, who earns £35,000.
Tanker drivers work in an increasingly fragmented and pressurised industry where corners are being cut on safety and training in a bid to squeeze profits and win contracts. Drivers face growing job insecurity as a result of the contract ‘merry-go-round’ and a ‘beat the clock’ culture has flourished with drivers forced to meet ever shorter delivery deadlines. Final salary pension schemes have been swapped for inferior money purchase schemes, and some workers are now on their sixth pension in as many years, with 10 to 15 years left to go in the industry.
Let’s be clear, playing politics with their anti-union diatribe is exactly what the Tories are doing.