Scottish Fuels apologise for fuel shortages

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Scottish Fuels have apologised for the ongoing fuel shortages in the Uists.

In a statement issued today (Wednesday), they said: “We are required by law to conduct maintenance inspections of our tanks and take all necessary steps to ensure their continued safe use.

“Unfortunately a number of repairs are required at the South Uist terminal and we are obliged to address these immediately.”

They add: “Due to these repairs the infrastructure does not permit deliveries directly from a ship at present, so our plan has been to supply the island from Stornoway.

“This has not been wholly successful this week due to tidal restrictions, which are hampering our ability to bring enough fuel to the island. We can only apologise to islanders for this situation but are determined to do everything possible to get this fuel to the island safely.

“Such challenges can only be overcome in the long term through investment and we intend to invest millions of pounds in the coming years to improve the fuel infrastructure of the Highlands and Islands.”

Local campaign group Fair Fuel Solutions have hit out at the situation and FFS spokesman Calum Ian Macmillan said: “Even while charging the highest fuel prices in Europe and taking it in by sea tanker, the cheapest form of distribution, Scottish Fuels seems unable to ensure a viable supply to the Uists. FFS will be raising the matter again with the Office of Fair Trading as there is a clear case to answer if the monopoly supplier cannot guarantee a regular fuel supply.”

See tomorrow’s Stornoway Gazette for more details on this situation.