Colonial Pipeline shut down some fuel networks As Hurricane Ida made a historic landfall

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Colonial Pipeline shut down some fuel networks As Hurricane Ida made a historic landfall

Mon, 08/30/2021 - 10:55
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Pipeline valve with manometer (copyright by Shutterstock/Krasowit)
Pipeline valve with manometer (copyright by Shutterstock/Krasowit)

On Sunday, August 29, 2021, Colonial Pipeline announced a shutdown of some of its fuel pipeline networks following an “extremely dangerous category 4 hurricane” that blasted the U.S Gulf Coast.

Ida Hurricane blasted ashore close to Port Fourchon, Louisiana, at around noon, bringing pipeline transport using part of the company’s networks to a temporary halt.

Colonial Pipeline, which conveys nearly 3 million barrels of fuel between Texas and New York a day, is the major fuel transport line connecting Houston refineries to the East Coast.

The famous U.S. pipeline company said on Sunday 29th it temporarily shut two of its pipelines running from Houston to Greensboro, North Carolina, as a precautionary measure ahead of the disastrous Ida.

“As part of our weather preparedness and response plans, we have procedures in place to ensure the safety, protection and integrity of our pipeline and our assets – including proactively shutting down our lines when necessary,” said Wes Dunbar, the vice president of operations at Colonial Pipeline.

However, the company said the rest of its pipeline networks from North Carolina to New Jersey remains operational.

According to the National Weather Service, Ida was one of the most powerful hurricanes ever to hit the country’s Gulf Coast, threatening the operation of the U.S.’s largest concentration of petrochemicals, refineries, and offshore platforms.

The partial shutdown of major pipeline networks is not expected to plunge the country into an immediate supply deficit since gasoline and crude oil supplies have surpassed a 5-year seasonal average by 3 % and 5%, based on the U.S. Energy Department report.

According to Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis and gas tracking website known as GasBuddy, it’s too early to predict the impact of Ida on gasoline prices and supply.

“For now, this is still not likely to be a ‘major’ event for gas prices,” said De Haan.

“If anything, Houston could see prices falling slightly as refiners in the area could get backed up with gasoline since power may be an issue for the Colonial Pipeline,” added De Haan.

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