Gas stations across Long Island are running out of fuel in the aftermath of Monday’s storm.
Retailers in Riverhead are reporting difficulties getting deliveries or even information on when they will next get deliveries.
That’s because the major wholesale terminal for the Long Island, located in Inwood — on the water in southwestern Nassau County, was “hit pretty hard” by the storm, according to Michael Watt, executive director of the L.I. Gasoline Retailers Association.
Watt said Thursday morning the supply to gasoline retailers won’t likely return to normal until Monday.
The Inwood terminal was still without power as of yesterday, Watt said. It had flooding problems as well, he said.
Many gas stations have fuel in their tanks but not the electricity needed to pump it out, Watt said.
That’s helping to create lines at the stations that have gas to sell and the power needed to sell it, he said.
“When New Yorkers see a line, they get on it,” Watt said. “It helps create a panic mentality.”
Demand is actually down, despite the use of gas-powered generators and chain saws in, Watt said, because people are not driving as much.
“The problem is not supply. The refineries are operational. One in Pennsylvania never shut down at all. The problem is distribution,” Watt said. Once the Inwood terminal is reopened, retail supply should quickly return to normal.
Riverhead Town has enough diesel and gasoline on hand to last till next week, according to John Reeve, supervisor of the municipal garage. He has been told he will get another delivery of diesel fuel Monday or Tuesday, but he said he hasn’t been able to confirm when his next delivery of gasoline will come.
“They said emergency vehicle fleets will be prioritized,” Reeve said Thursday morning, “so hopefully we’ll see a delivery sooner rather than later.”