Not long after the Office of Fair Trading announced they would investigate the pricing of fuel in rural areas comes the breathtaking news that the islanders in the Uists are now practically without fuel supplies. The reason given in one media outlet is that the tanks at the Loch Carnan depot need to be repaired, and can therefore not be topped up by seatanker. Although some supplies are trickling through by roadtanker from Stornoway, there is now virtual rationing in the islands. Particularly people whose job it is to look after the elderly and infirm are now desperately looking around for fuel, which is not there.
Fuel wholesalers Scottish Fuels have faced repeated allegations of
profiteering, by appearing to pocket the 5p / litre fuel derogation,
introduced by the UK government earlier this year. On top of charging
people in the Uist some of the highest prices in the United Kingdom
(£1.55 a litre), comes a situation of no fuel at all.
As a gesture of good will, I’d suggest Scottish Fuels gives the
Uisteachs a substantial cut in their fuel prices, if only for a day or a
week. Will that happen? We live in hope.