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PRESCOTT URGED TO ACT TO KEEP BUS SERVICES MOVING

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A confidential government briefing document seen by BBC Radio 4's Today programme warns that more than 100 bus depo...
A confidential government briefing document seen by BBC Radio 4's Today programme warns that more than 100 bus depots will be without fuel by midnight unless action is taken today to ensure supplies. Already, across the country bus services are being reduced, with many operators running Sunday services and dropping early morning and late evening schedules.

Simon Posner, of the Confederation of Passenger Transport Organisations, told the programme that while he welcomed news of the lifting of blockades at some fuel installations, it would not solve the problems overnight.

'Certainly by today we will see the great majority, if not all, bus services in this country changing. You'll start to see skeleton services; you'll start to see weekend services; and you'll see late and early services just not running at all. We still do not know when we are going to get the fuel. Come the weekend 30% of services might not be running'.

Mr Posner said bus operations had not been regarded as a priority. There had been only one fuel delivery yesterday - in the north east.

He added: 'The government can make orders to give priority. We want them, and we are calling on them today to make those orders and make priority to public transport. If it's off today, these petrol forecourts are going to take three weeks to get back [to normal]...

'We have fed Mr Prescott with a great deal of information on where the fuel is needed. We want to see those priority orders made, and made today'.

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