There is ample supply of fuel for both vehicles and generating sets in Cebu, according to an official from Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corp.
“There is no shortage of supply. We want everyone to calm down. Do not panic. Do not hoard. We have ample supply,” Llex Jay Denia, district manager for southern islands of Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corp., told SunStar Cebu at 2:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 20, 2021.
Residents have been forming long lines outside gas stations to buy not only fuel for vehicles but also diesel for generating sets after Typhoon Odette (Rai) caused a power blackout in Cebu from Thursday, Dec. 16.
Denia said while some gas stations had had their roofs or canopies blown off, majority were already capable of operating.
Of 62 stations that Shell has in Cebu up to Bantayan in the north and Carcar City in the south, 50 are already capable of operating, he said.
However, only 32 stations are currently operating.
“We have 32 stations operating as we speak,” he said.
Not all of the 50 stations are currently operating because fuel inventory in the stations is not that much and delivery of fuel from Shell’s depot in Mandaue City to the stations has been hampered by the heavy traffic, resulting in long turnaround times for its drivers, Denia said.
He said there was also a spike in demand for fuel for both vehicles and generating sets, though he could not give an estimate on the extent of the increase.
He said fears of a shortage have resulted in residents bringing extra containers and drums to stations.
However, he allayed their fears, saying Shell had even already supplied fuel to vital institutions like Visayan Electric, Globe Telecom, PLDT, Smart and hospitals, which also need fuel for their generators.
Denia said gas stations can not operate longer hours to meet the increased demand because “all the station dealers are also running on gensets,” which also need to be rested so that these don’t break down and the staff also have to rest.
Meanwhile, business establishments selling overpriced basic commodities like gasoline, rice, water and candles are now at risk of being closed down.
This, after Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama said those who are taking advantage of the crisis Cebu is facing will have their business permits revoked once proven guilty.
“The City will apply the full force of the law. These greedy traders do not deserve to do business in Cebu City,” said Rama.
The mayor clarified, however, that the Cebu City Legal Office will give due process to the establishments.
Rama also called on gasoline station managers in the city to prioritize vehicles from the Visayan Electric company and its sub-contractors. (CTL, PAC / CCP)