14 April 2020

COVID-19 Update: Important guidance for our customers

Following the recent Government announcements, we would like to advise customers of the following:

We’re still here to serve our customers

As suppliers of essential heating and transport fuels, lubricants and fuel cards, we are required to remain open for business to support our domestic, commercial and agricultural customers across the country. Our sales teams in all locations are operational, with the vast majority of our office-based colleagues now working from home, in accordance with government guidelines.

You can still call us on the usual number

You’ll still be able to reach us between 8am and 5:30pm on your usual local depot number to place orders, although many of our offices are experiencing high call volumes. Please bear with us – we’re working hard to help as many customers as we can, and we thank you all for your patience at this time.

Demand is high, but the UK supply chain is operating as normal

The UK fuel supply chain remains operating as normal and we do not anticipate that the situation is likely to change. However, demand from our domestic and agricultural customers is currently high which is increasing our lead times. In line with guidance offered by major retailers, and by the UK and Ireland Fuel Distributors Association (UKIFDA), we strongly discourage any ‘panic buying’ activity – please do not order oil if you don’t need a refill yet.

When placing orders, please help our team serve those most in need by being honest about your current tank level. If you’re a Cold Weather Priority customer, and/or in vulnerable groups classified by the Government, please let our teams know.

Also, please be aware that we are unable to accept payment via cheque at this time.

Our delivery service continues, but with some important changes

We’re continuing to deliver from all of our locations nationwide, but have made some important changes to ensure deliveries are contactless, and that drivers distance themselves from all customers.

We’ve asked our drivers to treat each delivery as if no one is at home. This means that they will not knock at doors, and will not ask you to sign for deliveries on their hand-held devices. Instead, drivers will sign on your behalf using the abbreviation PP to confirm deliveries.

For some homes, our drivers are required to reel hoses through a house, garage or conservatory to access a tank. We have issued specific guidance to our drivers and sales colleagues to help assess these situations and protect both our drivers and customers. Our drivers will ask you if anyone in the household is currently showing symptoms of COVID-19 or if you are self-isolating.  If the answer is yes, we regret that we will be unable to complete a delivery at this time. If we believe we can safely fulfil the delivery, we will ask you to open all doors and clear the route for the driver to come through the house and make the delivery without any interaction.

We’ve also taken steps to prevent contact and interaction between our drivers, with staggered start and finish times at our depots.

We will regularly review and update this guidance

With the rapidly changing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, information and advice from Government can change quickly. We will continue to review our status, and update our website at www.watsonfuels.co.uk with our latest guidance and information.

- Watson Fuels
Revised: 14th April 2020