Sandy affects local gas supply
By Jay Braman Jr.
The ripple effects of Hurricane Sandy continue to cause damage locally even though the storm is now long past.
While the Catskills came away from last week’s storm relatively unscathed, the downstate portion of New York was hit hard. One of the problems facing downstaters is a shortage of gasoline.
Late last week Governor Cuomo ordered more fuel shipments to the downstate region, which meant less deliveries upstate. As a result, fear swept through the Catskills over the weekend as long lines formed at the pumps where people were trying to fill up, and stay full, in the event that supply dried up.
In parts of Greene County there were some stations without fuel. This prompted one local station to ration gas.
Jerry Pearlman, who operates the Belleayre Plaza in Pine Hill, said that he got word Tuesday morning that his Mobil Station would not get a gas delivery this week.
“I’ve got enough gas for only about two or three more days,” he said. “They are not delivering at all.”
Pearlman said that his fuel distributer gets gas at a terminal in Albany, but that terminal is empty.
“The closest place he can get it is Syracuse,” Pearlman said.
Since the storm last week Pearlman has rationed out his supply. He started allowing $20 per vehicle, but has now dropped to $15 to try and make it last a little longer.
He decided to ration because downstaters were starting to cut deep into the supply.
“I don’t want people coming in here and filling up five or six gas cans and taking it to the city, which is what they were doing,” he said.
Pearlman wants his remaining supply to be used by locals only.
“They can get three or four gallons. At least that can get them to another station,” he said.
There are no supply issues in the Middletown area.
In a related story, a West Shokan man was arrested in New Jersey over the weekend for allegedly selling gasoline out of the back of a pickup truck for $8 a gallon.
Andrew Eberhardt, 22, of West Shokan and Richard Rothe, 41, of Saugerties were arrested Saturday evening and charged with town ordinance violations for soliciting without a permit within the township of Mahwah, NJ, Mahwah police said. Police said Rothe was additionally served with traffic summonses to appear in Mahwah Municipal Court for not having a valid driver’s license in his possession, operating a vehicle with an unsecured load, operating an unsafe vehicle and careless driving.
Officers stopped the truck as it was about to leave the parking lot of the Comfort Suites Hotel adjacent to gas station, police said. Police said in the rear of the vehicle was a large, unsecured fuel tank containing an estimated 200 gallons of gasoline. The men were allegedly trying to sell the gas for $8 a gallon, police said.