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East Coast Fuel Crisis!


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We have all heard by now that cyber criminals are holding a "private" company hostage and asking for ransom, but this should be rectified soon and fuel will start flowing thru pipelines again.  My questions are, exactly how many days/weeks/months supply do those tank farms hold?  If it is a week's supply there should not be a problem, right?  Thoughts?   

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The product in those lines moves at 5 mph. If the lines are empty, and I would think they are, it will be a lonnnnnng time before the east coast is resupplied. Houston to Raleigh by car is 1200 miles. That's 10 days if you do the math. It's not like turning on a light switch.

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Posted (edited)

you would have to read up on HOW the pipeline works and operates. we build most of the pumps for the line along with monitoring devices, etc... they do NOT pump it dry, as it is a volume ordeal, pumping various fuel types simultaneous using interface layers/barriers. there is ONLY a shortage due to the media saying there may be, so now there is. the line supplies about 45% of the fuel for those states. rest is via tanker, trucks, and the plantation pipeline. they could shut down the line for a week and no one would know hte better or even care. media (news & social) get involved and chaos ensues...

 

if everyone would have kept on as norm, then there would not have been a shortage. 

 

http://www.refinerlink.com/blog/Pipelines_Ship_Refinery_Products_to_Pump/

 

https://www.colpipe.com/news/press-releases/media-statement-colonial-pipeline-system-disruption

 

https://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.php?id=47917

 

most stations around here are out, but refueled each night, since we have a ton of tank farms around here. and everyone knows, well should know you can NOT hoard Ethanol Fuel if you want to use it :) so there will probably be a ton of wasted fuel soon. most are not wise enough to know better or how to even properly store fuel. since many are putting it in any container they can find or have laying around. really sad.

 

i could get one of our geek engineers to explain it in detail but i dont have the time to type it all up and none of you would have the time to sit and read it. plus translations from engineer to normal person 😛 

 

Edited by BearsFan315 (see edit history)
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I had not heard of this. To avoid another undesired political drift, I won't say much about it. 

However, a current west coast parable (but true!) tale.

Last week there were a few news stories out here about a severe shortage of chicken. I went to the store for my usual daily few things, and for a couple days (after the news reports) the store shelves were virtually empty of chicken. Yesterday, I went to the one store, and the shelves were loaded with all the chicken a hundred people could eat. I guess freezers around here are now full of now frozen chicken. Most of which will probably be ruined and thrown out in this summer's PG&E 'public safety power shutdowns'. 

Like toilet paper all over again.

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1 hour ago, BearsFan315 said:

they could shut down the line for a week and no one would know hte better or even care. media (news & social) get involved and chaos ensues...

Ding ding winnah winnah chicken dinner! (If that media driven shortage doesn't mess that up 😛).

 

The media well know their power over us. And as usual, someone wrote a song about it! 😃

 

 

 

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One day panic here in Virginia, things seem to have calmed down today.  175,000 miles of oil pipeline in the US ( not to mention over two million miles of natural gas pipeline), there has to be a hiccup every now and then...herd reaction is fascinating....

 

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And the news this evening reports everything is operating now.  See you in Luray for the swap meet!

Terry

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It’s not a hiccup, it was an executed attack by people from a foreign country to disrupt our fuel supply and hold it for a ransom payment. A hiccup is when a mechanical or electrical malfunction creates a temporary disruption, those do happen from time to time.  I can’t believe the attitude that it’s just normal, no it’s not unless we accept foreign governments doing things like this as a new normal.  What it does highlight is the poor defense we have against stuff like this and the need to take measures to keep it from happening in the future.  

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Posted (edited)

@TerryB - I don't think anyone is saying the hack isn't a big deal. What is not a big deal is the loss of a single pipeline for a week. There should be no panic over that. There should be civic concern over the hackability (yes, just made that word up) of our critical infrastructure.

 

Buying an extra 50 gallons of E10 isn't going to help anyone in the long run, and it just makes things worse.

Edited by Ken_P (see edit history)
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It’s the toilet paper scenario all over again. I recommend a double flush! 😎

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The hack happened Friday. Local paper published story on Sunday with no panic in the writting. The only news I heard on Monday and Tuesday was the  problem would be fixed by Friday. I noticed gas prices on Tuesday moring had not changed. But then, the internet blew up with paniced people. And that paniced more people. By Tuesday evening, on the way home from work, lines everywhere, out of gas signs. Ah, life in the commuter area, where gasoline is how people get to work, typically 40 miles one way, 80 to 100 miles a day per vehicle times 250K+ people. Down Northen Neck way, commutes are 150 miles+ a day, and they are mostly empty tanks at stations, since typically people fill up every few days anyway.

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I’m here in the southern part of Virginia and every station around here at the current moment is out of fuel. Everyone panic bought yesterday and it’s all gone today. The gas stations were backed up in the roads. They said any fuel deliveries will be limited quantity until everything gets back to normal. We had customers call the shop today and say they couldn’t come for their appointment because they didn’t have enough gas to get to the shop. I seen people yesterday with gas cans and everything panic buying and so everyone ran out. Since my truck was about empty I went and managed to get 8 gallons it costed me around $35 and it didn’t fill the truck up because they ran out as I was fueling. 

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I was told fuel with ethanol cannot be transported by pipeline due to it absorbing water. It will absorb water from humidity in the air, and spoil the fuel. Somehow fuel being transported by pipeline gets exposure to air. So fuel with ethanol gets transported by tank trucks and pipelines used for regular hydrocarbon fuel.

 

This was discussed by Bill Wattenburg on his radio show, in which he claimed ethanol is not an environmental benefit due to the transportation costs, and the fuel wasted by the trucks needed to transport it.

 

Ethanol is an interesting molecule. It is polar or hydrophilic (water-loving) due to the presence of the terminal hydroxyl group, so it dissolves in water. ... However, in the case of ethanol, the carbon chain is short enough so that the more polar -OH group dominates, giving the ethanol its polar character.

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My question is: How much more cyber criminality of this sort can we expect in the future? This incident is very odd...it sounds like something out of an old Batman episode, where the Joker holds Gotham City hostage. When everyone in the US gets their stuff from Amazon, or we import all of our industrial goods from China, something like this has rather chilling implications. So that my post isn't too off topic, here's the Batmobile:

2-Silver-Screen-Collection-Getty-Images.jpg

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Big companies are shockingly lax about cyber security. They just won't spend the money until they get hacked. Means of improving security are well known and not hard to implement but it does take some effort and expense and they  won't pay for it until it is too late.

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When every body heard the news they just went bonkers, and you know they just s--- their selves. Well now they have reason to use all that toilet paper they bought during their last panic!!!!!!

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7 hours ago, JamesR said:

My question is: How much more cyber criminality of this sort can we expect in the future? This incident is very odd...it sounds like something out of an old Batman episode, where the Joker holds Gotham City hostage. When everyone in the US gets their stuff from Amazon, or we import all of our industrial goods from China, something like this has rather chilling implications. So that my post isn't too off topic, here's the Batmobile:

 

 

James,

This incident in itself is not odd, kidnapping companies and hold them for ransom has been going on for years. It is only odd in the sense that the impact has an effect on just regular consumers. What about the Solar Winds attack last fall? I am confused as to why China is being brought up because these attacks have been coming from Russia. 

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6 hours ago, Rusty_OToole said:

Big companies are shockingly lax about cyber security. They just won't spend the money until they get hacked. 

 

Rusty, I don't believe that is true.

If you are in the security business and

have some documentation to confirm

the statement--especially in the oil or

pipeline industry for this topic--we'd be

happy to learn more.

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Posted (edited)

We have a port in my hometown that offloads gas, oil, LNG, ect. We have no supply issue here....none. Yet we have lines at gas stations and people filling up cans. The stupidy of the population is embarrassing, and many of the hoarders are college educated overpaid idiots. People can no longer think for themselves. We live in hurricane alley..........everyone should have 10 gallons of fuel for the season............it's not rocket science. Never, ever run your tank below half..........its better for the electric fuel pump, and you always have a cushion. It's really not that hard. One last comment.....if you think the government will protect you, your home, your family, and keep you supplied with food and water during a natural disaster..........you're insane. Be responsible for yourself. 

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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8 hours ago, mike6024 said:

I was told fuel with ethanol cannot be transported by pipeline due to it absorbing water. It will absorb water from humidity in the air, and spoil the fuel. Somehow fuel being transported by pipeline gets exposure to air. So fuel with ethanol gets transported by tank trucks and pipelines used for regular hydrocarbon fuels.

Well- way I understand it is it's all straight gasoline from the refinery to the tank farm, for this very reason. Ethanol and individual brand additives are introduced when the tank farm offloads it to local delivery tankers.

 

The pipeline passes thru here about 2 miles from the house. For all the ruckus over petroleum pipelines, if it weren't for the markers along its route you would never know it's there. Runs thru residential areas and working farmland.

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53 minutes ago, rocketraider said:

Well- way I understand it is it's all straight gasoline from the refinery to the tank farm, for this very reason. Ethanol and individual brand additives are introduced when the tank farm offloads it to local delivery tankers.

 

The pipeline passes thru here about 2 miles from the house. For all the ruckus over petroleum pipelines, if it weren't for the markers along its route you would never know it's there. Runs thru residential areas and working farmland.

 

When visiting Fairbanks Alaska a few years ago, we stood under the Alaska Pipeline.  It is only a few feet in diameter.  Yet when one looks at the maps of the pipeline that the anti-pipeline folks use, it appears about 100 miles wide!

 

As an aside, there is a fantastic antique car museum in Fairbanks.  Well worth the visit!

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18 hours ago, BearsFan315 said:

 there is ONLY a shortage due to the media saying there may be, so now there is.

 

I have been dramatized!

Defund The Media Hat – I Love My Freedom

 

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Enough of what the media says that I know to be wrong that I trust none.

Central Florida gets gasoline mainly from barges.

100,000,000 lemmings can't be wrong..

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I stopped at the station I always get my gas from on Monday. I had not heard of any problems when I stopped but, every pump was full and lines were backed up at all 10 pumps. I didn't pick up on anything wrong until I got home and watched the NEWSLESS station. I saw a picture of a man filling up one of those 275 gallon plastic totes and another picture of a woman filling up one of those plastic totes you buy from Wallyworld. Come on people, use your heads! Plastic and gasoline don't work well together !

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The media also is saying don’t go out and buy gas needlessly, I head that message many times this morning and other mornings.  They also show long gas lines, which is true, and stations out of fuel which is also true.  I did not hear one say “go buy gas gas before it’s gone”, however people read that into the message just like they do here.  We the people react to the message in our own way. Not everyone keeps their tank half full or practices a be prepared life style.  Social media spreads information more quickly than the news media ever does.  If cousin Frank says we are out of gas he is a trusted source and people react to it.  
 

The part that riles me is this group could screw up things for 5 days.  Had they invaded by land or sea we would have had them captured in minutes not days.  Instead it was some computer code that snuck in and put us in a frenzy for this length of time.  We need a more hardened system to defeat this stuff before it ever gets to this level.

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We head out early next week, driving the 7.3L Excursion diesel, trailering the '37 Roadmaster enroute to ther AACA Founders Tour in Davis, WV.

Our entire route, with the exception of only the final destination appears within the "cone of shame"  .

Hopefully by that time, the issue will have settled down.


Computer security was an issue when I first entered IBM's internal development back in 1967,

and things seem to have not improved much over the past 52 years

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I heard the pipeline company enriched the pirates by multiple millions which will guarantee it happening again. We need to get tough. Look up "letter of marque", it is still on our books as a possible remedy.

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The news just show a station on the NC & SC boarder that had filled their tanks that usually last 4 to 5 days. 5 hours later they were out of gas again because people are panicking and hoarding gas in cans and some in unsafe containers. It’s nuts that people are doing this panic buying. 

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well i learned a few things growing up around my grandparents...

 

mainly -> you can't fix stupid

 

the fact that the media (new & social) have such a huge impact on the world is a shame, people are reacting out of fear, and that tells you we live in a society that is full of fear, mainly the fear of the unknown. simply because they do not KNOW any better. 

 

we are only creating our own problems, seems many no longer have nor use common sense, and it (common sense) can not be bought online or in a store.

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1 hour ago, padgett said:

100,000,000 lemmings can't be wrong..

 

Walt Disney fibbed!

White Wilderness is a 1958 American-Canadian nature documentary produced by Walt Disney Productions. It is noted for its propagation of the misconception of lemming mass suicide.

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12 minutes ago, BearsFan315 said:

well i learned a few things growing up around my grandparents...

 

mainly -> you can't fix stupid

 

the fact that the media (new & social) have such a huge impact on the world is a shame, people are reacting out of fear, and that tells you we live in a society that is full of fear, mainly the fear of the unknown. simply because they do not KNOW any better. 

 

we are only creating our own problems, seems many no longer have nor use common sense, and it (common sense) can not be bought online or in a store.

50 years ago when I was doing a frame up restoration on both my 41 Packard woody and 31 Franklin Derham victoria I was working at a fellows house in his garage to do the paintwork on both cars. We had a lot of conversation time as we sanded numerous coats of primer and lacquer to the point the skin on our fingertips got thin.  Bob Patchke was a wise man, he told me " Everyone has common sense , not everyone has good sense" , I never forgot that and never will.

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23 minutes ago, Walt G said:

50 years ago when I was doing a frame up restoration on both my 41 Packard woody and 31 Franklin Derham victoria I was working at a fellows house in his garage to do the paintwork on both cars. We had a lot of conversation time as we sanded numerous coats of primer and lacquer to the point the skin on our fingertips got thin.  Bob Patchke was a wise man, he told me " Everyone has common sense , not everyone has good sense" , I never forgot that and never will.

It seems to me that there is only so much room in a persons brain for sense and knowledge. It's almost the case that the more education a person has, the less common sense. Just remember ignorance is curable, stupidity is terminal!

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I was hit with this ransomware several years ago. I was small potatoes and they wanted a thousand dollars to give me the code to unlock my stuff. I immediately stopped everything and had my IT person take over my computer and safely remove all the info I had separately to storage systems. I lost very little and of that I had back up elsewhere. I was extremely lucky. I can't understand why a system that controls so much doesn't have a double or Siamese system just in case.    

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