Between 25 to 30 per cent of licensed taxi drivers have been hit by the ongoing fuel crisis and are now unable to work, says a industry representative calling for the Government to act.
Steve McNamara, the General Secretary of the Licensed Taxi Driver's Association (LTDA), has repeatedly called for taxi drivers to be added to an emergency workers list to access dwindling fuel stocks. Diesel and petrol shortages in and around the capital has meant as much as 25 to 30 per cent of the LTDA members were unable to work yesterday.
The trade leader spoke to BBC Radio 4's Today programme calling for the Government to bring in designated emergency forecourts for critical workers to "take the sting out of the crisis".
McNamara went on to add that "a taxi driver without fuel is unemployed".
The Mayor of London, licensed taxi representatives and private hire leaders have all lobbied the Government to ensure the sector is included on any emergency fuel register should the fuel crisis worsen.
Last week the panic-buying of petrol and diesel prompted the London black cab industry to request taxis remain on the emergency fuel supply register in the capital should the situation escalate further.
Speaking on Radio 4 McNamara added "the Government policy at the moment of simply hoping it's going to go away is just not realistic".
Prime Minister Boris Johnson was quick to play down the current problems saying the situation was ‘improving’. He said: “We now are starting to see the situation improve, we’re hearing from industry that supplies are coming back on to the forecourts.”
Johnson’s comments follows the Petrol Retailers Association analysis showing that 50-90 percent of its 5,500 independent forecourt members had reported running dry at the end of the last week, but that figure has now dropped to 37% on Tuesday.