Gasoline Rationing Spreads to NYC, Long Island

With only 25% of gas stations in NYC operating, the mayor has instituted odd-even rationing that has proven effective in reducing lines in NJ. Meanwhile, MTA announced most transit and subway service have been restored to pre-Hurricane Sandy levels.

Odd-even gas rationing went into effect Friday morning, Nov. 9 in New York City and Nassau and Suffolk Counties on Long Island.

Winnie Hu describes the severity of the gasoline shortage in the metropolitan area that goes beyond service stations not having fuel or electric power, somewhat reminiscent of the figurative 'perfect storm' that affected the California oil production and pipeline system last month.

"Government officials and industry experts have said that the hurricane not only cut off power to many gas stations but also caused widespread damage to refineries and a distribution network of ports and terminals that delivers gas to the pumps. So even as power has been restored in the city and elsewhere, gas has remained in short supply because distributors are unable to tap into their usual sources."

"The Web site Gasbuddy.com, which has been tracking fuel availability in the New York region, reported on Thursday (Nov. 08) that 77 percent of New York City gas stations had no fuel, and 68 percent of Long Island stations were dry."

"The severity of the gasoline problem in the New York metro area is unprecedented," said Gregg Laskoski, a senior petroleum analyst for the Web site. "When there are infrastructure problems such as what occurred with Sandy, there are few alternatives available."

"In New Jersey, municipal officials and gas station owners said the rationing system adopted by Gov. Chris Christie cut lines in half almost immediately in some communities, curtailing demand on a system that will need at least several weeks to recover."

Would New York City motorists do better catching a bus, subway, or commuter train? Matt Flegenheimer reports on the astonishing return of transit service in New York Subway Repairs Border ‘on the Edge of Magic'.

"It has been less than two weeks since the most devastating storm in the New York City subway system's 108-year history. Seven tunnels beneath the East River flooded. Entire platforms were submerged. Underground equipment, some of it decades old, was destroyed

But nearly everything under the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's auspices, from its commuter railroads to its bridges and tunnels, is running close to normal. Each restoration presented its own challenge, but none more daunting than the task of resurrecting the subways."

Thanks to Mark Boshnack

Full Story: Mayor Mandates Rationing of Gas to Ease Shortage

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Irvin Dawid's picture
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Transit Planning For Sandy Surpassed Gasoline Planning

David W. Chen, Winnie Hu And Clifford Krauss write in the New York Times about the lack of planning of the fuel distribution system in preparation for Hurricane Sandy in the Nov. 10 article, "Behind New York Gas Lines, Warnings and Crossed Fingers". By contrast, the planned "shut down (of the) sprawling transit system and order(ing of) mass evacuations" showed much better planning for the arrival of the hurricane.

"Connecticut, which did not experience a gas shortage, established a task force before the hurricane arrived that took steps to prevent a gas shortage."

Local and state officials were faulted for not acting sooner to institute gas rationing, as was done on the other side of the Hudson River.

“The major problem is the terminals, but the mayor should have followed Governor Christie faster to curb some of the hoarding,” said Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst at the Oil Price Information Service."

The writers describe in-depth how and where the distribution failed during and after the storm.

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