This past week has seen the British population doing what they have had so much practice at many a time before, panicing. Snow, swine flu, hose pipe ban, and now petrol.
Petrol is the touchy subject that has had the majority of people breaking out in sweats and rushing to their nearest BP quicker than you can say jerry can this week. With the prospect of a strike on the cards, everyone is worrying that their tank will magically run empty overnight and they'll be left broken down and battling the elements in the middle of nowhere.
But the most frustrating thing is that people don't seem to understand that if - and that's a MASSIVE if - the strike is to go ahead, the general public will be given 10 days notice, leaving us plenty of time to panic buy then. But instead, in true British fashion, we ignored the news and the advice not to panic, and have done the exact opposite.
Forecourts up and down the country have seen queues down the road, as people fill up their tanks and as many jerry cans as they can get away with, as if petrol is some sort of magic substance in short supply. Well, well done everyone - it is now. You have only gone and created your very own petrol shortage before a strike has even began!
Petrol sales shot up by 80% seemingly overnight, and now the price has gone up too. That's just what we need since it was announced we are now officially back in a recession.
Don't get me wrong, I filled my tank - which is extremely rare for me - to the tune of £53, just in case. But I shalln't be rushing out until there's only about a quarter left, which is usual practice for me anyway.
In a way I can see where people are coming from; at the minute it's the Easter break and I don't have uni or a job to rush off to everyday, nor do I really have that many social commitments - maybe that's why I'm feeling so chilled about the matter - but for those who do this can't have come as welcomed news.
I just wish, for once, that people would see the bigger picture. Trust what the newsreaders are telling you - don't panic, but equally don't let your tank run dry - instead of just choosing to hear what they want.
I doubt in a way that people have spared a thought for the government through all of this. Yes that very same government that we were all slagging off last week when the budget was announced! No, now we are quite happy to line their pockets with petrol money, permitting them to have an extra few pints - and maybe even a pack of pork scratchings - at the House of Commons bar.
This week we've already seen one case of a woman seriously injuring herself after storing fuel in her kitchen - yes, that would be the kitchen where naked flames are often found! - and all because as a country we seem to be unable to swallow that infamous 'chill pill'.
So please motorists, yes put some fuel in, but don't queue for hours blocking up the roads making it difficult for the calmer folk to get around. Oh, and newsreaders, in future please refrain from using the word 'crisis' unless absolutely necessary; you can see the adverse effect this has on the population!!