Whitstable company losing carers as petrol prices hit record high

Susanne Wild says her staff can no longer afford to travel to people's homes

The manager of a Whitstable care company says the rising cost of petrol and diesel means her staff can no longer afford to travel to people's homes and are beginning to leave the profession.

Susanne Wild says her firm is having to limit the number of journeys to try and cut back, which is having an impact on the people they care for.

"Staff are leaving," she said. "They're cutting their hours. We can't get new staff through the door - that's the reality.

"We need our vehicles, we can't get to the people we need to go and see without having a car. It's simply impossible."

The average cost of filling a typical family car reached an all time high on Wednesday (8 June), at more than £100 pounds for a tank.

Some forecourts are already selling petrol above £2 per litre, according to price comparison website PetrolPrices.

Average diesel prices are also at a record high. They hit 186.6p on Tuesday, up 1.4p from Monday.

  • Susanne Wild says the rising cost of fuel has left her staff in an impossible situation

"So far we've been trying to give our carers petrol allowance, which is really difficult for a small company because we don't make a lot of money," Susanne added.

"We've tried to allocate staff to work within their areas, so they are not travelling as far but then that loses the continuity for our service users, and we've had to restructure times to try and compensate for the amount of travel.

"I have to think about where I'm going and what I'm doing to cut right back - all our staff are having to do that.

"We do a lot of social visits with our users, and we're having to cut those back which is having an impact on them as well.

The average cost of filling a typical family car with petrol could exceed £100 for the first time. Credit: PA

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: "A full tank of unleaded has now shot up to £99.40, moving us ever closer to the milestone £100 petrol fill-up - an unfortunate landmark we may reach as soon as today.

"Asda hiked its average petrol price nearly 5p a litre in a single day, which is unheard of.

"These are unprecedented times in terms of the accelerating cost of forecourt fuel."

AA spokesman Luke Bosdet said: "Yesterday's more than 2p-a-litre leap in average UK petrol prices is a huge shock.

"It fuels concern that speculation of a £2 litre just gives the fuel trade licence to pile on extra cost and misery.

"The Government needs to act fast to rein in these excesses."