Las Vegas-Bound Leaky Pipeline Fixed, Fuel To Flow Again

Posted on: February 12, 2023, 06:46h. 

Last updated on: February 12, 2023, 06:46h.

The damaged pipeline that supplies Las Vegas and the rest of Southern Nevada with gasoline and diesel fuel was repaired this weekend. Fuel was to start flowing again, officials said on Saturday.

Las Vegas gas stations saw lines this weekend
Las Vegas gas stations saw lines this weekend, pictured above. Panic buying took place after a major fuel pipeline was shut down due to a leak. The pipeline was repaired. (Image: KTNV)

The pipeline operator, Kinder Morgan, a Houston-based energy company, said it was forced to shut down the entire pipeline on Friday due to a leak at its Watson Station facility in Long Beach, Calif.

Workers found the leak, identified its cause, and the pipeline was operating again as of Saturday afternoon.

That led the company to announce it could once again use the 566-mile, 14-inch CalNev pipeline to provide fuel to Clark County.

A second pipeline, SFPP West, which stretches from California to Phoenix, Ariz., was also again available for fuel flow over the weekend.

States of Emergency Continue

But states of emergency issued Friday by Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo and Clark County officials were to stay in effect as of Saturday.

No timeline was given when the emergency declarations would be lifted.

“Clark County officials continue to monitor the Kinder Morgan fuel transmission situation and the County plans to keep our emergency declaration in place until we are confident our regular amount of fuel is passing through the pipeline and into our region,” Clark County spokesperson Erik Pappa said on Saturday.

Kinder Morgan also said it’s updating government regulators as progress is made on the situation.

We continue to be in close contact with our customers and the appropriate regulatory agencies as we work to resolve this issue,” Kinder Morgan said in a Saturday statement.

On Thursday, approximately 205 gallons of fuel leaked from the Kinder Morgan pipeline in Long Beach, the Las Vegas Review-Journal said.

The CalNev pipeline provides 90% of the fuel to the Las Vegas Valley, according to KLAS, a local TV station.

The Kinder Morgan pipeline is one of two pipelines supplying Southern Nevada gasoline storage facilities with unleaded and diesel fuel. The second one originates in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Kinder Morgan’s pipeline also supplies jet fuel to Nevada. But a company official said on Friday that its jet fuel delivery to Las Vegas’ Harry Reid International Airport was not affected by the shutdown.

Panic Purchases at Vegas Gas Stations

News of the shutdown and the states of emergency led to some panic buying Friday at a limited number of gas stations in Las Vegas.

Some stations even ran out of gas, according to KVVU, a local TV station.

Lombardo had discouraged motorists from heading to gas stations and buying fuel out of “panic.”

Lombardo also warned against price gouging by gasoline stations and other providers. If customers suspect price gouging, the governor advised them to contact the office of Attorney General Aaron Ford.

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