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Fuel Panic Hits Cornwall

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8:27am 30th March 2012

Police are threatening action to stop petrol queues in Cornwall.

They are worried the jams could be dangerous if they snarl up roads.

Some forecourts have run dry because of panic buying. That is even though there is still the same amount of fuel available as normal. We are still at least a week away from any tanker strike.

Drivers are being advised not to panic, but that does not mean we should not try to conserve fuel.

Here are some tips on how to do it:

Maintenance

  • Get the car serviced regularly
  • Make sure you use the right specification of engine oil (check the handbook)
  • Check tyre pressures regularly and before long journeys; under-inflated tyres create more rolling resistance and so use more fuel

Before you go

  • Remove anything from the boot you don't need so the car weighs less
  • Remove roof-racks to reduce wind resistance
  • Don't start the engine until you're ready to go
  • Plan unfamiliar journeys to reduce the risk of getting lost and check the traffic news before you leave
  • Combine errands such as buying the paper, dropping off the recycling, or collecting the kids
  • Consider alternatives for short journeys

En route

  • Drive smoothly, accelerate gently and read the road ahead to avoid unnecessary braking
  • Decelerate smoothly by releasing the accelerator in time, leaving the car in gear
  • Try to keep the car moving all the time - stopping then starting again uses more fuel than rolling
  • Cut down on the air-con
  • Turn off your heated rear windscreen, demister blowers and headlights, when you don't need them
  • Stick to speed limits: the faster you go the greater the fuel consumption
  • If you do get caught in a queue, turn the engine off if it looks like you could be waiting for more than three minutes.

Source: The AA

8:27am 30th March 2012

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