Over the weekend in the UK, thousands of gas stations ran out of fuel amid fears of a nationwide shortage. This crisis, hoped to be a short-lived weekend issue, now is feared to be a longer problem.
British drivers across the country started panic buying gasoline at the end of last week. On Friday, some gas stations closed due to an industry-wide driver shortage. This included an announcement from BP. These closures trigged fears of gas shortages, which in turn, did trigger a gas shortage.
Many reasons have led to this shortage, but one of the primary one appears to be Brexit. Following the UK’s exit from the European Union, foreign lorry drivers also left the UK. Between Brexit, Covid, and an aging workforce, the UK was left with a shortage of long-haul drivers. An estimated 100,000, to be exact.
While the UK is now offering thousands of temporary visas to foreign long-haul drivers in attempts to mitigate the crisis. The move reflects how serious the issue is within the government about the disruption to supplies.
Meanwhile, across the UK, fuel is running out at some stations. At others, lines are miles long. But so great is the apparent government concern over shortage that there is speculation the military could be called up to drive lorries.