Emergency plans for soldiers to drive petrol tankers to stop a threatened strike plunging Britain into chaos have been drawn up by the Government.
The contingency plans are aimed at preventing a repeat of the turmoil caused by protesting lorry drivers when Tony Blair was Prime Minister.
The results of a strike ballot of Britain’s 2,000 tanker drivers will be announced tomorrow – and both Ministers and well-placed sources in the drivers’ union Unite believe they will vote in favour of a walkout starting on April 3.
Coalition Ministers are determined not to see a repeat of the widespread disruption caused in 2000, when garages, supermarkets, schools, hospitals and airports were badly hit, catching the Labour Government unawares.
Ministers are ready to use emergency powers to keep such vital services open. They will use police to stop any threatened blockade by striking drivers, and this week they will start assembling a squad of up to 300 qualified Army lorry drivers to replace the tanker drivers if necessary.
Motorists will be urged to keep their tanks topped up, though Ministers stress there is no need to panic. Read More