Boris warns of fuel strike emergency

BORIS Johnson has warned the government is not taking the escalating fuel crisis seriously enough, City A.M. has learned, and has instructed London officials to start planning for an emergency.

In a letter to communities secretary Eric Pickles, seen by City A.M., the Mayor of London said the UK was facing a “potential fuel emergency” but that the government was still treating the situation as “normal”.

“It is clear that the circumstances of Level 2 (Potential Fuel Emergency) have been reached and yet we are still at Level One (Situation Normal),” Johnson wrote, referring to the National Emergency Plan for Fuel.

Yesterday, the Mayor called a meeting of senior representatives from the Metropolitan Police, the London Fire Brigade and Transport for London (TFL), to plan how to deal with potential tanker strikes.

City A.M. understands that City Hall has secured enough fuel to keep core services such as the police, TFL and the fire brigade in operation for at least two weeks if supplies dry up – but non-essential services such as black taxis and Dial-a-Ride buses are at risk.

The Mayor, who sent a copy of the letter to home secretary Theresa May as well as other senior cabinet ministers, warned there would need to be appropriate policing of picket lines to keep fuel depots open and said the Met was prepared to help other forces so that “supply can be maintained”.