Petrol Panic-Buying In The UK

Panic buying at the pumps has already begun today amid fears fuel rationing is on the way due to the UK's crippling HGV driver shortage - as Transport Secretary Grant Shapps tried to calm nerves by urging Britons 'carry on as normal'.

Queues of cars were seen spilling out on to the road from forecourts in Tonbridge, Kent, in Ely, Cambridgeshire, Bright and Leeds this morning - just a day after fuel bosses warned of petrol and diesel rationing and petrol station closures. 

One petrol station in Essex, was already said to have run out of diesel by this morning, while outside another forecourt on the A12, also in Essex, queues were said to be 'three rows deep to every pump'.

The scenes of queues outside petrol stations  - which for some will stir up memories of the 1973 Opec Oil Crisis and the 2000 fuel shortage - come amid fears of a 1978-style 'winter of discontent' for the UK, with skyrocketing energy prices, food shortages and fuel rationing.