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World

May 26, 2016

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British families left stranded

France petrol chaos

Millions of British holiday makers visiting France could be left stranded in their cars during the half-term holidays, the AA has warned, as half of local petrol pumps could run dry if French drivers panic-buy fuel over supply fears. 

A shortage caused by an industrial dispute means one in 20 pumps in North and North West France is currently short of petrol, but Edmund King, president at the AA, predicted this could rise to half of all pumps within days as French locals are panic-buying petrol to store in jerrycans.

As families prepare to catch the ferry and Eurostar to France over the bank holiday the AA urged drivers waiting to fill up their tanks in France to take advantage of cheaper oil prices to “think again”. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has updated its travel advice with a warning over fuel rationing in parts of northern and north-west France, saying:

“Following industrial action (blockades of fuel depots), fuel purchasing restrictions have been put in place by local authorities in some parts of northern and northwest France; in certain areas you may not be able to fill up jerrycans, and fuel rationing may be imposed”.  Edmund King, president at the AA, said: “Our breakdown services in Europe have been taking calls from UK drivers this morning who have run out of fuel. We are recovering vehicles stuck at the side of the road to places of safety until fuel supplies are resumed.”

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