Police urge frustrated motorists not to join M6 fuel protests

Drivers disgusted by the price of fuel are being urged not to join protests on the M6 on Monday.

Several filling stations are charging more than £2 a litre for fuel
Several filling stations are charging more than £2 a litre for fuel

The Fuel Price Stand Against Tax Group are planning to slow traffic to 30mph in lanes one and two of the northbound carriageway, starting at 6am at Junction 3.

Similar protests are being held across the country including the M54 in Shifnal, the A12 in Essex and the M25 in London,as the average price of fuel edges towards an eye-watering £2 a litre, with many filling stations already charging more than that amount.

However, West Midlands Police told drivers to consider the consequences of clogging up the road network.

A West Midlands Police spokesman said: "We’re aware that people may be planning to disrupt traffic on Monday (4 July).

"Together with our partners, we are experienced in managing this type of protest, but we’d urge drivers to check for any disruption on their route in advance of travelling.

"We would urge those planning to take part to consider the knock-on effect on people who may be trying to get to work, school or hospital appointments."

Any motorists who break the law during the protests can expect their collar felt and wallet hit by a fine.

The police spokesman said: "We’ll deal with any traffic offences appropriately.

"As with any journey on any day, we’d recommend that people check their route for delays by listening to local radio."

The protests were announced two weeks ago and at the same time a sign appeared near the M6 in Walsall calling for the motorway "to be brought to a standstill".

Businessman Andy Carloman is protesting under the banner Stand Up to Fuel Prices UK Wide and has organised a rolling convoy with at least 200 vans, trucks and cars between the services and Junction 4 near Shifnal on the M54 from 6am, Monday.

He said: “I have been involved in discussions with the police about where we will start and the nature of the protest as the last thing we want to do is break the law and risk arrest - but we certainly intend to get the message across.”

Retailers have been quick to pass on the costs of rising oil but slow to reduce prices after tax was reduced on fuel by the Government, which is known as rocket and feather pricing.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: "We are struggling to see how retailers can justify continuing to put up their unleaded prices as the wholesale cost of petrol has reduced significantly.

"This is sadly a classic example of rocket and feather pricing in action, and one which the Competition and Markets Authority will no doubt be looking at very closely."

He added: "It seems as if retailers are making matters worse for themselves by not lowering their forecourt prices despite having a clear opportunity to do so."

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