People have expressed their frustration over losing money and missing hospital appointments as fuel shortages continue.
The Petrol Retailers Association (PRA) said while the Army have been called in to help deliver fuel to forecourts and there is a “marked improvement” in the situation across most of the country, London and the South East have only seen a marginal” improvement.
Peter Atkins, 55, a driving instructor from Northfleet, told the PA news agency he has cancelled about five lessons, which cost nearly £60 each.
He said: “I don’t know why people are being the way they are. It’s getting beyond a joke – cancelling lessons and moving lessons and having extra hours on people’s lessons.
“I went out yesterday to get some petrol for this week and couldn’t find any. I’m losing money and it’s getting beyond a joke.”
Mr Atkins added because the test centre in Gravesend was removed a decade ago, despite attempts to get the Government to reconsider their decision, he has to go to Sidcup most of the time, which is about 15 miles from his house.
“Some days I go 100 miles a day, going back and forth. I average about 35 to 40 miles per pupil. Sometimes I have to fill up more than twice a week.”
Lucille Whiting, 39, from Kedington, Suffolk, said she missed a hospital appointment on Saturday and could not take her five children to school last week because she was unable to get any diesel.
She said: “I had a scan booked at my local hospital on Saturday, but that would have been 34 miles – I couldn’t get to that and get the kids to school this week.
“I’ve also had to cancel work appointments. I’m self-employed and visit clients on an ad hoc basis. That’s going to be extremely problematic in the coming weeks.”
Ms Whiting, who is a goldsmith at Sophia Alexander Jewellery – which specialises in making memorial jewellery, explained that her job requires her to “take fingerprints from people who are in the late stages of their conditions or go to funeral directors to see people who have passed”.
She added: “[I’ve cancelled four work appointments] in the last week, but I make high-ticket pieces so it’s potentially over £1000 already.
“Unfortunately, I’ve been ill on and off with Covid-related symptoms since April 2020 and one of my sons had problems with heart pain and his breathing for just over a year.
“It’s annihilated the best part of 18 months and I’m finally getting back on my feet work-wise so this is frustrating.”