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Fuel crisis latest: Jet fuel arrives at Wiri

The pipe is fixed. 

Victoria Young
Mon, 25 Sep 2017

Jet fuel will be ready to load on to planes from tomorrow (Tuesday) morning, as significant progress was made toward restoring jet fuel supply to Auckland over the weekend.

Repairs of the pipe from Marsden Point to Wiri have been completed, and jet fuel is flowing through the pipe but must settle for 30 hours before it can be retested and certified for use.

Mobil manager Andrew McNaught, representing the major petrol companies, says they will continue to consider the fuel allocations to airline customers on a daily basis and the allocations would be eased as soon as possible. Allocations were lifted from 30% to 50% of normal use late last week.

In addition, jet fuel is still being trucked out of a new loading facility at Whangarei, while on Saturday the Matuku delivered 1.5 million litres of jet fuel into tanks at Wynyard Wharf in Auckland. The industry has decided that the HNZMS Endeavour, moored off Marsden Point, is no longer needed.

Air New Zealand has no planned cancellations due to the fuel shortage today.

Meanwhile, Z Energy says petrol and diesel will follow jet fuel out of the pipe, and it will be building up its stock levels “behind the scenes.” It says it doesn’t expect significant disruption for customers.

In a statement, the petrol company says, “There continues to be plenty of fuel in the country, and any stock-outs will be minimal and short-lived as we continue to truck in fuel from Mount Maunganui and Whangarei until Wiri is at full capacity.” 

Z Energy chief executive Mike Bennetts says the company is still working to assess the potential impact on Z's financial performance. Mr Bennetts says he will update the market on 9 November when it reports its half  year results, and indicated it remains unlikely its full year earnings guidance would change. 

On Friday afternoon, Refining NZ released images, which it says shows the pipe was damaged by a digger. It says the images (below) show the digger bucket tooth indentation and the rupture which eventuated when the pipe burst.

Victoria Young
Mon, 25 Sep 2017
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Fuel crisis latest: Jet fuel arrives at Wiri