According to officials, at least 457 gas stations throughout France are experiencing fuel shortages as of Tuesday, December 4. The shortages were reportedly caused by disruptions associated with the nationwide "yellow vest" movement. As of Tuesday, demonstrators continue to block oil depots near Lorient (Bretagne) and Le Mans (Pays de la Loire). Reports indicate that the most affected areas include the Bretagne region. In the Finistère department, authorities imposed volume restrictions of 30 liters (8 gallons) maximum on fuel purchases. Further fuel shortages are possible in the near term should demonstrators continue to block fuel depots.
The "yellow vest" movement has been carrying out daily protests since November 17 against rising fuel prices and a planned fuel tax. Hundreds of thousands have engaged in slow-rolling protests to block roads and highways, causing significant traffic disruptions. Two people were killed and over 550 injured in traffic incidents during the height of the protests.
The government had previously announced a tax increase on fuel prices, including gasoline and diesel, beginning on January 1, 2019, to promote environmentally friendly practices. As of December 4, the French government is discussing measures to postpone the fuel tax increase for at least six months.
Individuals in France are advised to monitor developments to the situation, anticipate increased wait times at fuel stations, allow for extra time to reach their destinations, and avoid all protests as a precaution.
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