Ambulance services across England have allayed concerns that they could run out of fuel, amid widespread shortages at petrol stations across the UK.
Amid panic by worried drivers and a shortage of drivers affecting supply chains, there are growing concerns fueling emergency services and health workers.
Health unions have called on Monday to prioritize fueling the NHS and care workers to ensure they can go to work and care for patients in need.
Ambulance trusts across England have said there is currently no risk to their service as some have stockpiles of fuel that could last for several weeks.
The union of ambulance chief executives said it supported the idea of prioritizing fuel for staff, but said there was no widespread problem that would affect 999 responses.
The Yorkshire Ambulance Service Trust has urged people to follow government advice and not panic buying fuel.
It has had reports of employees struggling to find fuel for their cars, but said it had plans in case the situation worsens.
John McSorley, Strategic Commander of the Yorkshire Ambulance Service Trust, said: “We currently have sufficient fuel stock for our ambulance vehicles. We have strong business continuity plans in place to ensure that we are able to respond to patients who need them. Our assistance is needed and can implement additional measures if necessary.
“We know that, like many others, some allies have found it difficult to obtain fuel for their own vehicles and we have a staff transportation plan that can be activated if the situation escalates.”
Some ambulance services have “bunked fuel” supplies based on their own depots and stations, which are used to fill ambulances at the start of their shifts.
The East of England Ambulance Service said it was not experiencing fuel-related problems and services were operating normally. It added: “There is sufficient fuel supply for all our fleets, the current stock will last for 24 days.”
The South East Coast Ambulance Service said it has sufficient fuel stock and is monitoring the situation. A spokesman said: “We urge the public to be sane, buy only the fuel they need and, as always, be aware when driving any blue light vehicle looking to progress through traffic.”
West Midlands Ambulance Service said it had its own fuel supply and it did not matter. London Ambulance Service said it had plans in place and there were no current problems accessing fuel.
North West Ambulance Service and East Midlands Ambulance Service both said they have plans should there be a problem.
Lee Brooks, Director of Operations at the Welsh Ambulance Service, said: “The Trust has a plan in place to continue a service in the event of a fuel supply disruption. We are working in Wales to better understand the picture and mitigate any risks.” We are working closely with our allies including the government for this.”
Credit: www.independent.co.uk /