Currently reading: Petrol stations may close due to low demand, warns trade body
Petrol Retailers Association warns dramatic dive in sales during pandemic will make businesses “unviable”
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2 mins read
1 April 2020

Petrol stations could be the next victim of the coronavirus pandemic, after warnings that a dearth of business will force many to close in the coming weeks.

The Petrol Retailers Association (PRA), which represents the independent fuel retailers that make up the majority of UK forecourts, cites a government survey claiming sales of petrol have fallen by an average of 75% across the UK, with diesel down 71%.

“Many petrol stations will have to close in the coming weeks, as sales of fuel dry up and their businesses become unviable,” the PRA said in a statement.

Stations in hardest-hit rural areas will be most at risk, it claims. Motorists are advised to check that their local station is actually open before leaving the house.

The problem is compounded by the majority of retailers filling their fuel storage tanks at much higher wholesale prices prior to the price of crude oil collapsing. In the past week, fuel prices have fallen to a rate not seen since June 2003.

“Fuel retailers are having to maintain pump prices at previous levels to avoid suffering significant stock losses,” the PRA claims.

The PRA aims to keep a “strategic network of petrol stations open across the country” but acknowledges the immediate challenges many of its retailers face. As well as reduced demand and falling prices, staff shortages, competition from supermarkets and lack of delivery flexibility are all taking a toll.

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Jeremy 1 April 2020

It's funny how when wholesale

It's funny how when wholesale prices fall, the petrol stations can't reduce their prices "because they bought their fuel when the price was higher" . But when wholesale prices rise the petrol stations immediately put their prices up, rather than saying "we bought our fuel when the price was lower, and so we won't put our pump prices up until we buy more supplies at the new higher price"!

Pietro Cavolonero 1 April 2020

Stalling the inevitable

IIRC the number of filling stations were already at their lowest for 100 years, if governments insist on the policy of outlawing ICE driven vehicles then these establishments should have been planning for their inevitable demise already.

Peter Cavellini 1 April 2020

Goes to show.

 Reduced use of what we take for granted really shows how much we really need to run our cars, more walking to the corner shop, no quick five minute journeys, things like that, yes, it's a shame for jobs and that but, it's more money for what we need to live.

catnip 1 April 2020

Peter Cavellini wrote:

Peter Cavellini wrote:

 Reduced use of what we take for granted really shows how much we really need to run our cars, more walking to the corner shop, no quick five minute journeys, things like that, yes, it's a shame for jobs and that but, it's more money for what we need to live.

I'd like to think that this current crisis might make a lot of people consider what they actually need. A reduction in unnecessary journeys, less spent on fast fashion, excess and conspicuous consumerism, maybe consequent reductions in waste and emissions. But no doubt everyone willl just go back to their old ways as soon as they are able.

si73 1 April 2020

Peter Cavellini wrote:

Peter Cavellini wrote:

 Reduced use of what we take for granted really shows how much we really need to run our cars, more walking to the corner shop, no quick five minute journeys, things like that, yes, it's a shame for jobs and that but, it's more money for what we need to live.

si73 1 April 2020

Why didn't the comment post

Why didn't the comment post with the quote?

But people aren't driving to work as they either aren't working or are working from home which in a lot of cases isn't sustainable, so obviously fuel use is down because people can't drive, it's not just unnecessary journeys that have stopped.

xxxx 1 April 2020

panic

Still at least there'll be no hoarding.