Far be it from me to be supportive of government, but for once in its existence it said something sensible, truly, utterly, earth-shatteringly sensible and then got slammed on the Channel 4 news last night by Jon Snow.
You see, there has been talk of a petrol tanker driver’s strike for some time, recently they voted “yes” to have the strike, which made the news. The date for the strike hasn’t been set, and it might not happen, so the government took the opportunity to advise people that maybe, just maybe they should think about having a full tank of fuel and maybe a spare can (the politician, Francis Maude said “Jerry can“) at home, instead of what is apparently normal practice in the UK of having your tank a third full and no spare fuel at all at home.
What did Jon Snow pick up on after this comment? That a jerry can contains 20 litres for petrol and it is therefore illegal to store this at home. You see in this country we have a great many laws aimed at protecting us from almost every possible negative eventuality, namely, the health and safety laws. This country enjoys making laws so much that we have 650 MP’s who turn up to work every week day and make laws, they’ve been doing it for years. I have to wonder whether one day they’ll turn up for work one sunny Thursday morning and realise that they’ve finished, that’s it, there are enough laws at last: “Ok fella’s, that’s it, we’re done. Let’s all go and have a glass of Pimm’s on the House of Commons front lawn.”
But anyway, the simple fact is that it is sensible to have your car a third empty rather than a third full for a number of reasons. You use less fuel with a full tank as the fuel pump has to do less work to get the petrol to the engine, so good for your pocket and good for reducing CO2 emissions.
Also, what if there is a petrol tanker driver’s strike? What is wrong with having enough fuel to see you through the turmoil? Nothing.
What if there is a disaster within the supply chain, what is often called the “just in time” delivery method? This could be anything from a terrorist attack on a pipeline or bad weather or sea conditions preventing a few oil tanker ships from getting to the UK.
At the end of the day it is good that the government want to encourage us to look after ourselves rather than rely on them or the “system”. “Plan for the worst and hope for the best” has been my motto for quite a long time. Society doesn’t owe me any protection from events that happen that can’t be foreseen. So well played .gov, for once, and bollocks to you Channel 4 news.