The Bedfordshire and Luton Local Resilience Forum is urging residents not to panic buy petrol, as domestic....
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Local Resilience Forum warns of the dangers of storing petrol

Posted on April 3, 2012

This article was published in April 2012. Please see Latest News for more recent information.

The Bedfordshire and Luton Local Resilience Forum is urging residents not to panic buy petrol, as domestic storage of fuel may be illegal and very dangerous. Instead the local resilience forum is urging locals to take a sensible approach to buying petrol and consider ways to conserve the amount of fuel they use.

BLLRF chairman, Deputy Chief Constable John Fletcher stated: "Petrol is a highly flammable substance that gives off flammable vapour even at very low temperatures. It can easily be ignited by sources such as a naked flame, spark or electrical equipment".

"Petrol is also a very toxic substance and can cause serious illness if ingested or inhaled; it may also cause damage to the skin, with regular contact. We strongly advise against stocking up on petrol and storing it in jerry cans, for the purpose of refuelling motor vehicles at home. To do so may be against the law, depending on the quantity stored.

The warning is further reinforced by an incident last week, which occurred when a woman from York was badly burned when petrol ignited as she transferred it between containers in her kitchen.

Deputy Chief Constable John Fletcher continued "Ultimately, panic buying will only lead to more panic buying which could lead to depleted stocks and fuel shortages, particularly in the more rural areas of the county. There is no strike planned over the Easter period and we urge residents to take a sensible approach by purchasing fuel as they would normally. Now might also be a good time for residents to consider ways to drive more fuel – efficiently. "

To help residents save fuel, BLLRF are directing residents to the government advice on Tips include ensuring types are pumped up, clearing out excess clutter and changing gears at the right time.

Anyone with information on the illegal storage of petroleum, or who wishes to receive further advice or guidance, is asked to contact the Petroleum Officer at your local council or call Bedfordshire Police on 101 or Bedfordshire and Luton Fire and Rescue Service on 01234 845000 and ask for the Fire Safety Department for advice

Further information on the safe storage of fuel can be found on HSE's Petroleum FAQs

Source: Bedfordshire and Luton Local Resilience Forum (BLLRF)

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