View Full Version : US finally benefitting from Mexico (temporarily at least)

06-19-2008, 04:35 PM
(snip)Shrinking fuel supplies causing mad scramble

Public bus service may be halted today
By Omar Millán González

June 19, 2008

TIJUANA – Truck and bus drivers experienced a day of chaos in Tijuana yesterday, as they chased a dwindling supply of diesel fuel. Today was shaping up to be even worse.

Pemex gas station manager Claudia Torres placed a sign yesterday to block the entrance to the diesel pumps after the Tijuana station ran out of the fuel.
For weeks, drivers from the United States have snapped up Mexican diesel, which is selling for about 50 percent less than in California.

That has resulted in a shortage of the fuel, and gas stations nearest the border crossings started halting or limiting sales last weekend.

By yesterday, diesel had started to run out at outlying stations, provoking delays or cancellations in public and private transportation. New supplies might not arrive until Monday.

Long lines of trucks and buses, their drivers desperate to buy diesel, formed at those stations still selling the fuel.

Public transportation officials announced that if they could not refuel their buses they would halt service today, a decision that affects at least 750,000 daily riders.

“We spent today suspending routes,” said Armando Robles of ABC y Subur Baja, a popular bus company in the region. “Up until Tuesday, we were leaving every 20 minutes. Now with the diesel shortage, we're leaving every hour to make what we have last,” he said. “But we know that an enormous problem awaits us on Thursday because we won't find any diesel.”

Jorge González, a manager at Mexicoach, a bus company that transports tourists to both sides of the border, said the company canceled some trips yesterday. Mexicoach, which previously bought diesel in Tijuana, was now buying it in San Diego, paying significantly more. González said the company had no choice but to raise its fares as well.

Dozens of cargo trucks were stranded along roads south and east of Tijuana after their drivers could not find diesel. The drivers said their only choice was to wait until gas stations were replenished.

“I transport perishables from Tijuana to La Paz, and I've been stuck here for more than two hours waiting for more diesel to arrive,” said Roberto Pérez, a driver with Coronado Truck. “I'm being doing this for 20 years, and I've never seen anything like it.”

Local officials with Pemex, the national oil monopoly, have refused to comment about the crisis for days. But in Mexico City, its director, Jesús Reyes Heroles, denied yesterday that there was a fuel shortage on the border, the news agency Notimex reported.

He did say, however, that Pemex was “taking extraordinary measures” to supply gasoline to that region, particularly in Tijuana, because of the massive influx of motorists from the United States who bought Mexican fuel, the news service reported.

Mexican government subsidies keep the fuel price lower than in the United States. A gallon of regular unleaded gas (87 octane) sells for $2.54, premium (91 octane) for $3.19 and diesel for $2.20.

Rationing of diesel began Friday, with gas stations nearest the border crossing receiving no new shipments since then. (snip)

aren't government subsidies wonderful when you don't have to pay the taxes to fund them ?