Transport companies on the island are facing a dilemma as a result of the rising price of fuel; if they increase their prices they will lose customers, and if they do not they are liable to go bankrupt. In January 2010 a litre of diesel cost €0,96 at the pumps, whilst a year later it had risen to €1,15 representing an annual increase of €2,700 for each lorry. There are also two or three ‘pirate’ lorry drivers who are not licensed and work at slightly-over cost price, resulting in unfair competition.
Another problem they face has been the practice of siphoning off fuel from their tanks when they are parked. The situation has got so bad that many drivers are leaving their fuel caps unlocked as the damage that the thieves do by breaking the locks costs more to repair than the fuel which they steal, with larger lorries with bigger deposits particularly vulnerable. They also commented that locking caps are being replaced with those which do not need a key to avoid the expense of replacing locks and keys.
Some thieves use a different tactic and employ a cordless drill to perforate the tank to pump the fuel into other containers. A representative of the lorry drivers on the island commented that this is something new and whether it is because of the crisis or sabotage by rival companies he does not know. On the other hand the fuel could well be stolen for resale at cheaper prices to other transport companies.