12 SEPTEMBER 1940, Page 5

What the national petrol stocks are I do not know,

but in spite of the admitted fact that there have been some losses by enemy action they ought to be good, for the Government obviously budgeted for a very extensive consumption in France, and that is not now taking place. That being so, I should hope the question of a more generous allowance to motorists who will undertake to give lifts to people needing them would be ar- ranged. Communications may be seriously disorganised, and in- adequate public transport facilities in such conditions can only, or best, be supplemented by the private motorist, who is doing a great deal already to get chance wayfarers to their businesses in the morning or their homes at night. But the private motorist has so little fuel that the services he can render are gravely restricted. I agree that it would be difficult to ensure that any extra petrol ration would be used altruistically, but some risk might be taken regarding that, and in any case the present price of petrol is such as to make it unlikely that much would be used for pure joy-riding.

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