Alabama Pipeline Leak Chokes Gas Supply For East Coast
Devika Krishna Kumar and Jessica Resnick-Ault
The spill in Alabama is the company’s largest in 20 years, and disrupts a major source of fuel.
NEW YORK, Sept 15- Colonial Pipeline Co, operator of the largest refined products pipeline system in the U.S., said on Thursday it delayed the full restart of its main gasoline line bringing fuel to the East Coast to next week after a 6,000-barrel leak in Alabama.
The company shut its main gasoline and distillate lines – critical to East Coast product supply – on Friday, after the leak in Shelby County, Alabama, which appears to be the largest spill for this line in 20 years.
Colonial had originally estimated a full restart of Line 1, which runs to Greensboro, North Carolina from Houston, by this weekend, but work was delayed on Wednesday evening and into Thursday morning because of gasoline vapors at the site, the company said.
Traders are bracing for tighter supply in the U.S. East Coast and Southeast markets such as Georgia and Virginia if a full restart of the gasoline line is delayed further, particularly as the outage comes around refinery maintenance season when refiners are producing less fuel.