At least three area gas stations ran out of regular-grade gasoline on June 4, which had some busy weekend motorists scrambling to other gas stations in the South Cariboo.
Complete outages of regular gas were seen at Lac La Hache (Race Trac Gas), the 70 Mile General Store (Petro-Canada) and the Lone Butte General Store (Race Trac Gas).
At the Race Trac Gas in Lac la Hache, staff confirms the regular gas pumps ran dry on Saturday evening (June 4) and stayed that way until a fuel delivery arrived the next morning.
While the station’s staff was unable to confirm current status of their fuel supply, they believed it to be sufficient.
Meanwhile, Lone Butte’s Race Trac station staff reports their regular gas supply was completely exhausted for about five hours during that same evening.
Those pumps were back in operation on Sunday morning when the tank was replenished, leaving the general store’s fuel supply status “everything OK.”
Further south at the 70 Mile House store’s station, staff notes their regular gas pumps completely dried up on Saturday afternoon (June 4), with the supply fully restocked the next morning – when they then ran out of premium fuel (on June 5).
As of June 7, its premium fuel outage continues, but staff says their regular fuel supply is “OK now.”
Employees or management at all of the other gas stations (except the two Petro-Canada locations) confirm no recent fuel shortages occurred at their pumps, and that fuel supplies are believed to be sufficient now, or expected to be replenished shortly by scheduled deliveries.
These include the Husky, Super Save and Chevron stations in 100 Mile House, the 108 Mile Ranch Esso and the Interlakes Esso.
No information was available for the fuel supply status at the two Petro-Canada stations in 100 Mile House, including at the 7-Eleven store, although a local source says there was no outage at the bulk fuel on Exeter Station Road. The status of Clancy’s Fas Gas in Lac la Hache was also unavailable.
However, recent gasoline shortages have been reported by the media at Petro-Canada stations in Vernon and Kelowna, as well as in Edmonton, Calgary and Medicine Hat.
Petro-Canada indicates a “temporary fuel shortage” at its stations in Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and British Columbia’s Interior stemmed from the Fort McMurray area fires and an “unplanned outage” at its Edmonton refinery (See www.pumptalk.ca).
The June 6 online release states these two issues created an “unavoidable impact” on the fuel corporation’s ability to produce and supply its normal volume of gasoline and diesel.
Petro-Canada spokesperson Sneh Seetal says the corporation is working to improve its fuel supply as quickly as possible.
“The [Edmonton refinery unit], that had the outage, produces the majority of the gas we need for our supplier network.
“That unit is expected to be back in service by the end of the week (June 11) and then we will start working quickly to replenish sites as quickly as possible.”
Petro-Canada also apologizes (in the release) for the inconvenience, and pledges to improve the situation by:
• bringing in an additional supply for its Edmonton refinery;
• restarting its oil sands operations “in a safe and staged manner”;
• bringing in additional gasoline from other parts of its network via truck and rail as quickly as possible;
• working to bring the affected unit back into service safely and as quickly as possible; and
• continuing to look for solutions to limit the impact to its customers.