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‘I’ll report abusive drivers’ warns manager at Burwell petrol station near Newmarket as he urges motorists not to panic buy fuel

The manager of a petrol station in a village near Newmarket has warned drivers against verbally abusing his colleagues and encouraged them not to panic buy fuel amid the HGV driver shortage.

As queues built up at refilling stations around the county, the Co-op manager in Burwell, Steve Smith, took to the village’s Facebook community group following 'incidents' with motorists trying to fill up their vehicles.

“It's with great sadness I post this but due to incidents today I feel I have to,” he wrote.

Some filling stations have reported long queues
Some filling stations have reported long queues

“May I remind you verbal abuse will not be accepted to any of my colleagues. Also remember all of our store and forecourt is monitored by CCTV so I will personally ensure all incidents of abuse are reported.

“Is there a shortage of fuel?... Simply NO, it's a shortage of drivers across the UK.

“Will we run out of fuel?... Quite possibly yes due to everyone panic buying.

“When you are queuing for fuel can you please not block entrances so others can still use the car park to shop.

“Also once you've filled up, can you move your car so as not to block pumps for others who are waiting to use them.

“So in summary, #BEKIND the colleagues are doing their best. Don't panic buy as there is enough fuel it's just driver shortages for certain companies. But most of all do not abuse the staff or the police will be informed with CCTV evidence provided.”

There were lengthy queues leading to the Co-op forecourt in Burwell yesterday afternoon.

Small numbers of filling stations closed their forecourts on Thursday and Friday due to HGV driver shortages, meaning they were awaiting fuel deliveries.

The closures prompted many drivers to go out to fill their tanks, leading to queues and shortages elsewhere.

Transport minister Grant Shapps warning motorists against panic buying and denied the driver shortage had anything to do with Brexit, suggesting the pandemic had led to a shortage of new drivers passing their tests.

Some commentators have suggested the Armed Forces should be drafted in to ease the driver shortage.

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