Ports resuming operations in hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico

On Sunday October 1st the first tanker to arrive after hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico discharged liquefied petroleum gas. The port of Ponce reopened on Saturday, with restrictions, reported Reuters. At San Juan, fuel imports continue at a slow pace. Tanker Beryl was discharging gasoline from Amsterdam on Tuesday October 3rd, while Navig8 Strength had unloaded diesel on October 2nd.

Three other tankers carrying fuel imports are waiting off San Juan and three more vessels are anchored near Guayanilla. At Yabucoa, tanker CT Cork, coming from Dominican Republic, was at the dock on Tuesday. In the neighbouring island of St. Eustatius, US-based NuStar Energy said that its Statia oil terminal should be fully reopened by mid-October, which would help unclog oil refining bottlenecks throughout the Caribbean since Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Jose and Maria affected shipments and refining capacity.

Buckeye Partners has resumed operations at its marine oil terminal and storage tanks in Puerto Rico. Buckeye last week reopened a truck terminal at Yabucoa, but fuel imports to Puerto Rico until now have mostly been limited to San Juan port. A lack of delivery trucks has made it difficult to replenish gas stations. “Buckeye has safely resumed full service of its marine, truck and tank operations at the Yabucoa, Puerto Rico Terminal Facility and is available to meet the fuel needs of the island’s businesses and residents,” it said on October 3rd.

Yabucoa, on the southeast of the island, is Puerto Rico’s largest terminal, with capacity to store up to 4.6m barrels. Puma Energy, which operates four terminals with capacity to handle some 3m barrels, and which serves a network of 340 gas stations, has doubled fuel sales in Puerto Rico.