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BS: why are there gas lines

mg 01 Nov 12 - 09:31 PM
GUEST,999 01 Nov 12 - 09:47 PM
Ebbie 01 Nov 12 - 10:08 PM
Janie 01 Nov 12 - 10:18 PM
mg 01 Nov 12 - 10:27 PM
maeve 01 Nov 12 - 10:27 PM
Bobert 01 Nov 12 - 10:28 PM
Janie 01 Nov 12 - 10:33 PM
maeve 01 Nov 12 - 10:33 PM
maeve 01 Nov 12 - 10:36 PM
Janie 01 Nov 12 - 10:41 PM
maeve 01 Nov 12 - 10:41 PM
Bobert 01 Nov 12 - 10:51 PM
Richard Bridge 02 Nov 12 - 12:22 AM
mg 02 Nov 12 - 01:07 AM
mg 02 Nov 12 - 04:09 AM
JohnInKansas 02 Nov 12 - 06:42 AM
McGrath of Harlow 02 Nov 12 - 07:08 AM
Bee-dubya-ell 02 Nov 12 - 12:03 PM
Stringsinger 02 Nov 12 - 12:09 PM
GUEST,mg 02 Nov 12 - 12:50 PM
Bill D 02 Nov 12 - 01:39 PM
gnu 02 Nov 12 - 02:29 PM
Charmion 02 Nov 12 - 02:54 PM
JohnInKansas 02 Nov 12 - 03:11 PM
GUEST,mg 02 Nov 12 - 04:08 PM
Ed T 02 Nov 12 - 04:53 PM
Bill D 02 Nov 12 - 05:03 PM
GUEST,mg 02 Nov 12 - 05:38 PM
JohnInKansas 02 Nov 12 - 06:04 PM
GUEST,Stim 02 Nov 12 - 06:09 PM
Bill D 02 Nov 12 - 06:24 PM
gnu 02 Nov 12 - 06:24 PM
GUEST,mg 02 Nov 12 - 06:31 PM
McGrath of Harlow 02 Nov 12 - 07:16 PM
GUEST,mg 02 Nov 12 - 07:23 PM
redhorse 02 Nov 12 - 07:30 PM
Bobert 02 Nov 12 - 07:37 PM
Janie 02 Nov 12 - 10:49 PM
Jack the Sailor 02 Nov 12 - 11:18 PM
mg 03 Nov 12 - 01:20 AM
GUEST 03 Nov 12 - 03:01 AM
GUEST,999 03 Nov 12 - 04:44 AM
GUEST 03 Nov 12 - 05:34 AM
GUEST,999 03 Nov 12 - 05:47 AM
GUEST,999 03 Nov 12 - 06:33 AM
maeve 03 Nov 12 - 07:19 AM
JohnInKansas 03 Nov 12 - 07:32 AM
Bobert 03 Nov 12 - 07:34 AM
Bobert 03 Nov 12 - 08:37 AM
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Subject: BS: why are there gas lines
From: mg
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 09:31 PM

From Sandy...shouldn't there be big convoys of gas trucks reaching the places where gas can be pumped? What is wrong? This is not the middle of SOuth Dakota...even if they had to ration gas elsewhere to get it there...come on America...and don't get me started on the generator situation in those hospitals.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST,999
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 09:47 PM

Right. No offense, but what are you talking about?


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Ebbie
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:08 PM

I gather that they've run short of petrol in New York and other regions that Hurricane Sandy hit and the OP is wondering why there are not fleets of gasoline trucks converging on the area. Oh, and don't mention the malfunctioning backup generators at that hospital so that they had to evacuate critically ill people including 20 babies to another hospital.

(Actually, evacuating people rather than chasing down a working generator seems strange to me too.)


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Janie
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:18 PM

Uhh, there is not a scarcity of gasoline. There is a scarcity of electricity. Gas pumps at gas stations run on electricity.

No electricity = no way to pump gas up out of the storage tanks at gas stations. Common problem with major power outages and natural disasters. That is why it is always recommended you fill your gas tank when preparing for a possible natural disaster.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: mg
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:27 PM

I am only referring to the places where they are and have been pumping gas...also, we can refuel helicopters high up im the air...can we not fuel cars directly from a truck?


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: maeve
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:27 PM

One report here:
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/02/us-storm-sandy-hurricane-idUSBRE89N16J20121102

"The Pentagon was airlifting power restoration experts and trucks from California to New York to assist millions of people still living in darkness.

Fuel supplies into New York and New Jersey were hit by idled refineries, a closed New York Harbor, damages to import terminals, and a closed oil pipeline.

The scarcity of fuel, electricity and supplies made cleanup more daunting for barrier towns.."


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Bobert
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:28 PM

Well, I understand what mg is talking about (which is rare)... But yeah, the American infrastructure is last century's infrastructure... Not this one's...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Janie
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:33 PM

Not to mention move your vehicle, if possible, to higher ground. No ground high enough if one lives quite close to much of the shore of the East Coast USA. New England has some shoreline cliffs and escarpments. The rest of the east coast, from at least New York City and Long Island to Florida, has several miles of coastal flood plain and savanna. The coastal topography is very, very different from the Pacific coast of the USA.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: maeve
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:33 PM

More here http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/02/us-storm-sandy-gasoline-idUSBRE8A102P20121102
(one advert to wait for)
"Long, increasingly ill-tempered lines of motorists snaked through New York and neighboring New Jersey, snarling traffic as motorists hunted for the few service stations still operating in the wake of the devastating storm Sandy. Less than half of the thousands of stations in the region are open, officials said.

With major refineries, fuel terminals and oil pipelines still out of service three days after Sandy, and demand picking up as normal life resumes, the situation is getting worse instead of better.

More than 4 million homes and businesses remain in the dark. The need to find fuel for generators has led to competing lines of people clutching red gasoline canisters at gas stations across the region.

Corey Hill, a 40-year-old plumber, said he'd traveled for 10 hours through Queens and Brooklyn trying to find gasoline. A long line was waiting as technicians tried to fix a generator at the service station on the border of the two boroughs.

"I have people with emergencies waiting on me, but if I can't get gas I can't get to my customers," Hill said."


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: maeve
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:36 PM

That same article goes on to say, "The most immediate remedy arrived in the familiar form of oil-tank trucks, which were driving as far as Delaware City - three hours south - to pick up fresh fuel, according to PBF Energy, whose two refineries emerged unscathed from Sandy.

But those 8,000-gallon dispatches are likely to be too few and far between to make much of a difference in a region that is still short of nearly half its normal gasoline, diesel and heating fuel supplies after Sandy's destructive tear."http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/02/us-storm-sandy-gasoline-idUSBRE8A102P20121102


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Janie
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:41 PM

There is no man-made infrastructure, in spite of the arrogant belief of us human beings, that can ultimately trump Mother Nature.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: maeve
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:41 PM

Exactly, Janie.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Bobert
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:51 PM

Ditto...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 12:22 AM

Amazeballs.

There are (I gather) fractured gas mains (that's gas in the sense of a gaseous vapour that is burned in for example cooking, not gas that England calls petroleum) still creating explosion and fire risks.

A whole generating station went bang because some pillock left it running when water poured in.

Electricity for heating and cooking and light is out for mile after mile.

The Stock Exchange was up and running when hospitals had no power or backup electricity supplies.

Large areas are covered in mud that contains raw sewage.

And the thing that worries people most is putting petrol in their cars.

Sheesh.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: mg
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 01:07 AM

I think we need a Department of Why It Can't Be Done. At Least By Us.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: mg
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 04:09 AM

another question..why is there gas leaking all over the place? Is there not a way to shut all of the gas off past a certain danger point? There is a terrible danger of fire and explosion I think in New Jersey...seems they need to shut off some valves before people get killed...gas lines and disasters are not good companions....


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 06:42 AM

Some of the photos posted have shown long lines of people, each with one or two 3 to 5 gallon gas cans, waiting in line to get fuel for their auxiliary generators (at least that's what they told the reporters).

Small generators that you put gasoline in generally won't run more than three to five hours on a tankful of gas, and the cans those people were were carrying wouldn't hold enough to fill the typical tank. While you might be able to run an aux gen for a couple of hours once or twice per day to keep a freezer or refrigerator "cold enough" on 5 gallons of gasoline most of the people probably only wanted to charge their cell phones ...?? ??

I'd be surprised if any of those in the lines shown could carry enough in the cans they had for any useful auto range.

An editor for one of the major PC/Computer Magazines complained in an enews dispatch that his office only had one outlet on an aux generator so there were long lines waiting to get to the outlet - to charge their phones. (He had previously said there were only about 30 people "at work.") Any generator worth yanking the rope to start it should be able to charge 50 or more phones at the same time, without loading it down to where it burned more fuel than just idling with no output at all, but these technical geniuses never heard of a multitap extension cord ... ??????

(this is a reporter I used to have some respect for, but judging from his most recent output, maybe he doesn't know you can plug in more than one wall wart at a time.)

John


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 07:08 AM

Major disasters screw up lots of things. It is not possible to fix everything right away. Grow up...


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 12:03 PM

While there's no areawide shortage of gasoline on the wholesale level, there is a shortage in the immediate NYC/NJ area. The port has been closed for a few days. Gasoline tanker trucks that would ordinarily be filled at distributors on the local waterfront are having to drive to Pennsylvania and can only make a fraction of their usual number of deliveries per day.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Stringsinger
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 12:09 PM

Gas prices are being inflated by Wall Street speculators in oil stock and the availability of natural resources will diminish, due to global warming, a systemic causality of hurricanes, fires and draughts. Wall Street trades on these disasters as speculators hike the prices to make more money.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 12:50 PM

Of course you have to bring it from PA or someplace out of the disaster zone. You will have to divert some that usually would go elsewhere, perhaps with government intervention. The day will come when the divertees will be wanting gas themselves. You have to act quickly because there are probably lives at stake and people obviously need the gas either to get out of the situation or to check on elderly relatives etc.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Bill D
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 01:39 PM

".can we not fuel cars directly from a truck?"

Umm... no... the connections don't match.

McGrath said it simply: things are broken. You might as well ask a man with a broken leg who's on crutches why he doesn't run faster.

There ARE people who are working as fast as possible to shut off dangerous power & gas lines.... some of the valves & switches are broken or hard to reach!

Much easily available fuel has to go to the National Guard, fire departments, police, and repair crews!


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: gnu
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 02:29 PM

I have a 6500w genie that has an auto throttle to match load. It can run 8 to 14 hours at max/min load. I have enough gas to run EVERYTHING for 10 days. I have enough wood to heat my house for ten days. I have enough propane and white gas to cook for two years. I have enough food to eat for three years. I have enough water for 6 months.

The only things that cost a lot of money were the emergency power panel at about $1000 and the generator at $5000. I saved near that much money by stocking up on gas, food and wood on a cyclical basis since I saw the economy starting to tank shorlty after Bush took office. When the Canuck military starts investing MILLIONS AND MILLIONS of dollars in military infrastructure, ya kinda know something is up, eh?

Oh, and I bought a shitload of ammo real cheap, so if ya need a place to stay and a hot meal, ask first.

To get back to the OP, it does seem odd that gas stations don't have emerg power. Cheap and easy. They do have access to gas to run generators to pump more gas. Seems VERY odd. Especially as the greedy gas companies could make a shitload of money REALLY screwing people over... no?


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Charmion
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 02:54 PM

I wonder whether the people who work at those fuel stations are on the job ... ?


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 03:11 PM

Just posted a couple of hours ago, some good news at least for New York City:

New York Harbor reopens, bringing hope to the fuel-hungry

Opening the harbor, and waiving registry and permit requirements for transporting fuels, offers the likelihood that incoming fuel supplies will improve fairly soon, although "tomorrow morning" still is unlikely.

(It also must be hoped that someone bringing in tankers under the waivers of normal rules doesn't blow one up and block the harbor for several months. Sanity and logical planning isn't all that expected from big city politicians, last I heard.)

The article makes reference to some of the difficulties of fuel transportation even under normal conditions, so it may help provide some understanding of what to expect over a little longer term, for those interested enough to follow the link.

The presence of fuel where it's wanted is still just one small bit of the supply puzzle, but as the headline says, it's reason for hope.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 04:08 PM

How much of a generator does it take to power the gas pumps say at an average shell station? Why were they waiting for generators? Why are they licensed to pump without generators? Can gas be manually pumped from tanks? Can it be siphoned? If we can't figure this out I suggest we call on the Somali Pirates...we can not have the lifeblood of our country inaccessible because of lack of generators, fittings, etc. This is how food, water, shelter, emergency personnel get things. I have said it often..this is the Achilles heal of USA..we can not get stuff from one place to another..we have a lack of transportation intelligence and planning and rely too much on 3 helicopters and hoping for Fedex to pick up the slack. And we have to be able to move things by water as well as land. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Ed T
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 04:53 PM

When Hurricane Juan hit Halifax Nova Scotia, we were out of power for ten days. It was not too cold (last week in Sept), so we used our Propane camp stove, BBQ, camp light, small heater and our LED flashlights for the ten days. It was a slight inconvenience (especially getting hot water for personal cleaning)- but hardly a major hardship. We charged up our cell phone in the car and have a battery powered TV and radio to keep up on local news broadcasts. I waited at A Costco line up for awhile one day to refill my propane tanks. Now I have four in my shed-which will last for awhile. We had city running water-so that was a blessing.If it were cold winter, the issues would be more pressing, IMO.


Some folks used generators, mostly to power every light in their house, computers and TVs and freezers-fridges. I believe many folks had home insurance to cover freezer loss, so I did not see the big panic to power freezers?

I bought a generator after Juan - which has remained unused for many years. However, a big power box came in useful for short electrical outages, to power a few lights for a short period. You can even power a computer, if you have the urgent need.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Bill D
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 05:03 PM

"Why were they waiting for generators? " Most stations never need one.

"Why are they licensed to pump without generators?" Most stations never need one.

"Can gas be manually pumped from tanks?" Not easily... there's just a BIG hole where trucks pump it in, and opening that can be a fire hazard when the normal connection is not in place.

"Can it be siphoned?" Same answer.


Modern society/technology DOES run on a complex, interdependent relationship. You simply can't have multi-redundant backups for every conceivable situation.


Better questions would be... WHY do they allow people to build entire neighborhoods right on the ocean and other places where there WILL be problems? and WHY do 'regular' people refuse to prepare for emergencies and then complain that no one comes to save them within the hour?


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 05:38 PM

I think some people can not prepare due to lack of mobility, cars, ability to drive and finances. There are others who have all of the above and should be given stiff fines if there was mandatory evacuation and they did not, especially if they endangered children or the elderly in the process, and I would not give those who endangered children a free pass because they didn't know what to do with pets. The exception would be able bodied men and women without dependents who stayed to possibly help but that would be for law enforcement to decide. Strong bodies are needed after a disaster.

I don't buy that never need one answer. If it will be catastrophic for you not to have something that costs a few hundred or few thousand dollars, you should have one and not be licensed to operate unless you do. I am not saying every Kinko's should have one, although it would be nice, or every beauty parlor, but stuff that keeps people from dying..yes...inflict some more regulation here.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 06:04 PM

Putting a generator in a gas station isn't just a matter of hauling it in and dumping it off a truck. There are a number of rather complex building code and safety requirements in most places that make it extremely expensive, especially for places where it's unlikely to be used more often than once in a hundred years - if ever.

And as soon as you turn it on for the necessary maintenance and testing that must be done periodically, the neigbors will start a petition to shut you down because they don't like the noise.

Gasoline or diesel fuel can be pumped manually, but because both are controlled to fairly specific vapor pressure ranges they evaporate components needed for efficient ignition and burning if stored in open, or sometimes even in "vented" containers, and while an individual farmer can use a tin can on a short stand, with a hand transfer pump - because only small quantities are needed - a typical station can't get by with any really practical manual pumping system and opening the tank to insert an available kind of manual pump will quickly degrade what's left in the tank by evaporation and oxidation.

You can't siphon uphill, and it's been about 50 years since I've seen an above ground storage tank at a station.

Even trucking in more fuel is problematic, (assuming a way to pump it) since the existing fleet of tankers is generally all in regular use, and diverting them elsewhere would just cause shortages in the places where they were being used. Usage could be increased by using double crews to reduce idle time, but tractors with sleeper cabs are ill-equipped for towing tank trailers (and may face regulatory barriers) and there are no drivers to put in expanded crews, since tanker drivers must be "HazMat" certified, which eliminates around 80% (rough estimate) of all the available truck drivers. (And putting two truckers in the same cab requires finding them in pairs who won't kill each other over politics - and other mystical beliefs.)

Fuel shipments outside normal routings also face the problem that there's nothing to use as a go-back load. It costs 60% to 80% as much to drive a mile in a typical truck without a load as to drive the same mile with one, but the driver only gets paid for the miles with the load. Most cargo haulers rely very much on an efficient dispatcher to find them a load to pick up within a few miles of each drop off point, so they don't have to pay for dead-head miles out of their own pocket, but there's nothing that a tanker can take back toward home. (Even if there was something to carry, there are so few competent dispatchers that they'd never be able to handle any unusual event.)

In many disasters, fresh water is about as much a problem as the gasoline, but there are almost no tank trailers that can be certified for potable water, so the need is met by diverting "reefer" trailers to haul ICE. Diversion means that the reefer that took water (as ice) to Louisiana didn't take fresh or frozen beef from Kansas City or Chicago to Quebec. (The same problem with the dead-head home is present for ice haulers, since it's not legal to carry frozen people who'd like to get out of a disaster area.)

Even gnu's answer for individuals of having his own generator and sufficient fuel is not possible in most places due to local codes on storage of fuels in residential areas. Propane is probably the best fuel for a fixed aux generator, but the requirement that a large enough propane tank be 100 feet from an occupied dwelling rules it out since most city lots don't have 100 feet of space on any side of the dwelling (that wouldn't be within 100 feet of the neighbor's house). It's also ILLEGAL in many places in my area to even have more than 30 to 50 gallons of gasoline (depending on location) on the premises regardless of how it's stored, unless it's in an operable vehicle. (Of course I could store more of it safely, since I'm so smart and know how to do almost anything; but can I trust my neighbor's tank not to explode and burn down my house?)

What would be most helpful would be more widespread recognition that most of the people who think they "must have ..." aren't really so important that it really would make much difference if they'd just sit on their butts and be patient until normal services are returned by the people who are working on getting it back.

Those who really have an emergency should be able to get assistance, to the extent that there's anything that can be done, but demanding what you can get along without for a while ('cause you're so much more important than others?) is not the "neighborly thing to do."

John


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST,Stim
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 06:09 PM

I'll bet you've got a lot to say about those "deer crossing" signs, MG--


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Bill D
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 06:24 PM

Thanks, John... I tried to give the condensed answer, but spelling it out helps.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: gnu
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 06:24 PM

I disagree, John. It's merely backing up the power to pump each of 3 tanks, 4 if they have diesel, thru an emerg panel next to the main entrance panel (you don't have to supply the power to run any more than one lane of pumps in an emergency). If done up front, it's squat money. A retrofit is a little bit more than squat money. If you have a different, more detailed cost analysis than my in depth "squat money" theory, I would appreciate reading it.

Seriously, a 6 breaker emerg panel, genie and housing would cost under $2k. In comparison, how much does it cost to build a gas station? or save lives?

As for the neighbours and running up a genie once a week? Well, fuck em... it's a safety issue... THEIR safety.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 06:31 PM

We don't have deer crossing where I live...they are in total command of the roads.

And I fail to see the problem with somewhat shorting other areas who would get less gas...if it is a situation with death staring you in the face, as it has been in some disasters vs. temporary shortages elsewhere....I personally can walk a few miles into work as can quite a few others...we can all give up optional trips etc...the situation could have been much worse..much higher winds, many more fires etc...
Where state emergencies have been called, I am sure that payrolls can be adjusted somehow to acocunt for return trips etc.

And they are talking about waiting for backup generators for the places that pump the gas into the trucks without mentioning building codes etc. Sometimes you just have to do it.

And if you only need a generator every 100 years, how wonderful that would be. Many people in some areas use them fairly often. I bet they could be rented out if the gas station didn't need them.

Also, testing etc....important and should be not up to the neighbors. Testing of hospital generators important but screws up some electronics I guess...could they be taken off premises every now and then for testing? Or wired just to power a certain section of the hospital and perhaps patients moved to that section? I don't know. If we do not have enough people trained in these areas, and I aam obviously ignorant, then we need to get more in the pipelines, starting with training for some things in high school.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 07:16 PM

It's possible to prepare for emergencies, amd it makes sense - but if the emerbencies don't arise often enough those things will be attacked as "red tape" and "over-regulation" and "the nanny state" and they are liable to be scrapped for reasons that are basically to do with politics, and short term profiteering.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 07:23 PM

What is the situation on Staten Island? They are still finding bodies...can boats get in and out? Are all docks smashed? How close in can boats get? How rough are the waters.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: redhorse
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 07:30 PM

To add to John's excellent post, there is also the additional factor of people "stocking up" in these circumstances (if you go out to fill the can for the Genny, it's common sense that you top up the car's tank at the same time, and keep it full because you're not confident of when you'll get the next opportunity), that puts an increased demand on the fuel supply logistics that in itself would cause problems even without the disruption to the electricity supply.

Modern economics means no company can afford to have spare capacity (fuel, tankers, drivers, etc) hanging around unused in case special circumstances might arise. If you try to do that, you're out of business before the emergency happens.

UK catters will remember the mad week earlier this year when rumours of tanker drivers' strike, aggravated by some stupid politicians were enough to get demand totally outstripping supply, in spite of no reduction whatever in the supply.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Bobert
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 07:37 PM

The Staten Island Ferry is up and running... Cranes are now moved the scattered recreational boats to marinas...

John in Kansas is correct... A "generator" ain't the end-all-be-all to getting pumps to work... Gas pumps don't plug into the wall... They are hard wired into circuit breaker panels and in order to have a generator provide the power to run them it also needs to be hard wired into those panels... That sounds easy but it isn't... It involves another device that acts like a teeter-totter and allows voltage from only a single source: line or generator but not both... These are tricky to wire correctly and need to be inspected before cranking up the generator...

In most cases the line voltage has to be interrupted to install the generator... In this case the line voltage is interrupted but no electrician in his right mind would hard wire a generator into a panel without permits and inspection or the fear that in the middle of the job the line voltage would be restored and get blown the heck up...

Some thing ain't as easy as folks think...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Janie
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 10:49 PM

Grateful to see people with some sense of reality and acceptance of reality posting. Have been through some natural disasters - a few that impacted a large number of people and more that were smaller in scope in terms of the numbers of us impacted, but no less devastating to us who were impacted.

Part of the risk of living.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 11:18 PM

mg, here is a theory. the shortages are due to anti-gouging laws. If the stations could charge more it would be worthwhile to hire generators to power the pumps and to divert tankers and have them drive overnight from where it is available.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: mg
Date: 03 Nov 12 - 01:20 AM

There is a flotilla of gas tankers on the sea now they say. And if we truly, which I find almost impossible to believe, do not have the gadgetry to transfer liquid gas which we can put in a can and walk around with, from a high up truck to a low down ambulance, then we will have to find others who can figure out this severe problem..somebody somewhere can work out some fittings...this is a very fundamental problem...the Somali Pirates could probably do it with
a can opener and a bit of surgical tubing.

Go ahead and sneer. Or help solve problems. Your choice.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Nov 12 - 03:01 AM

If Americans call petroleum spirit 'gas', what do you call gas?


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST,999
Date: 03 Nov 12 - 04:44 AM

The gas rising from the pool of gasoline is flammable.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Nov 12 - 05:34 AM

Eh?
I meant, what do you call the gas that's used, e.g. in heating furnaces, gas fires etc.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST,999
Date: 03 Nov 12 - 05:47 AM

Natural gas (basically, methane).


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: GUEST,999
Date: 03 Nov 12 - 06:33 AM

The difficulty occurs I think because of the following.

What UKers call petrol is what North Americans call gasoline. However, gasoline is often shortened to gas as in 'put some gas in the car.' We should be saying 'put some gasoline in the car.'

Furnaces/fireplaces use natural gas and on occasion propane.

To avoid confusion on emergency scenes I've worked, we called a spade a spade. That means natural gas was called natural gas, propane called propane and gasoline called gasoline.

I hope that helps.


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: maeve
Date: 03 Nov 12 - 07:19 AM

The wonderful thing about such threads is that we do not all approach problem-solving in the same way. A partnership of some uncomfortable questions with knowledge of the situations under consideration can enable people with the practical know-how to actually make a positive difference.

I admire mg's fearlessness in continually asking questions.

Maeve


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 03 Nov 12 - 07:32 AM

In most fairly densely populated areas, the common US heating fuel is "natural gas." It comes out of the ground and takes little "cleanup" and it's pumped cheaply through pipelines with only an "odorant" added to make it easier to detect leakage.

In rural locations where there aren't pipelines for natural gas, "propane" use is fairly common, but is significantly more expensive. Where it's used, propane comes to the farm in a tanker truck, so the transportation costs are part of the reason it's more expensive than "natural."

The two "gases" are not interchangeable, although the equipment changes/differences required are fairly minimal if the equipment design permits swapping out the right parts.

"Natural gas" actually is a mixture of a range of molecular weights, but on average has significantly better "energy density" than propane, so it provides more heat per unit and is also significantly cheaper per unit. The price of natural gas has been falling recently, with the result that many coal-fired electrical generators have been replaced with plants that burn natural gas, simply because it's cheaper, but also because it evades the emissions cleanup devices mandated to be used soon. The emissions rules have been on the lawbooks for a very long time, so they're not traceable to any particular political party or administration. The demise of coal fired generating plants is purely due to natural gas being (currently) a whole lot cheaper and much cleaner.

In older communities there still are quite a few who use "fuel oil" which is sometimes called "diesel oil" or occasionally "kerosene," although there are differences between the products traditionally using each of the names. In the past, the term "coal oil" was used some, but almost never was a "correct" name and has dropped into oblivion in recent decades.

Some vehicles use a concoction similar to the home heating oil(s) (with a few more/different additives and slightly different refining) that's most commonly just refered to as "diesel." Most bio- processes for making vehicle fuels from plant materials produce fuels close enough to petroleum based "diesel" to be used as "biodiesel" with minimal effect on the machines that run on it, with the exception of about a 15% reduction in the miles per gallon and a slightly higher price per gallon at the pump. Refining the "bio products" to something suitable in non-diesel vehicles is too expensive to be practical at present, although ethanol can be extracted from some of them to be used as a gasoline additive.

Biodiesel market penetration might be higher in the US, but there are no diesel vehicles that can be legally imported from other places where they're used more due to emissions limits, and the demand hasn't justified more than token efforts to produce "home made" ones for sale here. Until fairly recently diesel fuel was significantly cheaper than gasoline, and you got twice the miles per gallon; but diesel here is now about 30%(?) more $ per gallon than gasoline and there are few choices for small vehicles that can use it.

"Gas" is a shortened form for "gasoline," the vehicle fuel called "petrol" in some other places. When there is the possibility of confusion, in US usage, "gasoline" would be the preferred term, but it seems many USicans have difficulty with words more than one - or sometimes two - syllables.

The number of "all-electic" new homes constructed in the US surged ca the early 1950s during a period of fairly low electric prices and higher prices for other fuels, but it's only recently that the advances in things like better heat pump efficiencies have brought the cost of electric heating close enough to natural gas costs to be really competitive, although new homes in higher price ranges have perhaps begun moving back to electric heating because it's considered a little "cleaner"(?) [you have to ignore the pollution at the generating plant to have cleaner at the end point] and likely(?) [just another crap shoot] to have more stable pricing. In newer communities with all the wiring underground, some argue that electric power is more reliable than other easily available forms, but that's a continuing debate.

As recently as the mid to late 1960s there still were people with coal burning home heating furnaces, and we had coal heat when I was in Boston (1963); but I can't say how many of that kind still remain in use. More widespread use of "pelletized" coal/coke and automatic feeders could have kept the usage alive, but it's pretty much unknown in places where there's easy access to natural gas.

For most homes in the US woodburning fireplaces are just a decoration, and as usually designed they suck about as much heat up the chimney as one gets in the house. They can be very efficient in a real heating system and are used in some places, but municipal codes in major cities discourage their use.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Bobert
Date: 03 Nov 12 - 07:34 AM

Sure, the tanker trucks could be rigged up as portable gas stations, mg, and that may be an idea that will come out of this disaster... To do that with even one tanker would take several days (at a bare minimum) to install pumps and rig them up to accept credit or debit cards...

But it sounds like a good idea for the next disaster...

Seems, like war, we're always fighting the last one...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: why are there gas lines
From: Bobert
Date: 03 Nov 12 - 08:37 AM

Wood stoves or inserts are the way to go... You can actually heat your home with them... Fireplaces only heat you on the side facing the fire but in doing that sucks whatever heat you had in the house up the chimney...

I wouldn't be without one or the other...

I have lugged my generator from Wes Ginny to the farm in Virgina and it is now here in NC but not yet hard wired into the circuit panel which, as I have described above, ain't all that easy...

B~


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