ANNAPOLIS, MD—Governor Larry Hogan today authorized Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) Secretary Greg Slater to take emergency measures to respond to the Colonial Pipeline incident and ensure continuity of fuel supply throughout the state.
“The emergency actions that we are taking will provide the state the flexibility it needs to address any disruption in fuel supply,” said Governor Hogan. “It is important for Marylanders to know that the supply chain is still working—albeit more slowly than usual—and there is no need for panic buying. While the operators of the pipeline anticipate that the disruption is likely to be short-term, we continue to prepare for all contingencies as part of our statewide response.”
With the governor’s designation of authority, Secretary Slater is issuing emergency waivers of weight restrictions and hours-of-service requirements for Maryland motor carriers, consistent with the federal regional emergency declaration. This increased flexibility is key to relieving supply pressures throughout the state, and will help to address transit issues as additional supplies are brought in from out of state.
The governor will provide an update on the state’s response at his press conference later today.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON MULTI-AGENCY RESPONSE:
Maryland Energy Administration (MEA)
- As the lead agency, MEA has activated the state’s Fuel Emergency Plan, and is tracking all state fuel reserves.
- MEA is engaged in ongoing discussions with the U.S. Department of Energy, coordinating with state agencies and other state energy offices.
Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE)
- MDE is working closely with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other states to ensure that a responsible and limited waiver from certain fuel requirements under the Clean Air Act is issued during this emergency.
Baltimore/Washington International (BWI) Thurgood Marshall Airport
- To this point, there is no impact on airline operations at BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport.
- BWI is in regular communication with Colonial Pipeline, the air carriers, and the local fueling agent. The airport is working with airline partners and fueling companies to put alternate fueling measures in place.
- The airlines currently have several days of fuel inventory on hand. The airport has initiated over-the-road truck deliveries of fuel, and will continue to monitor the situation and adjust plans as needed.
Port of Baltimore
- The Port of Baltimore is set up to receive petroleum products such as gasoline and diesel transported by product carriers.
- Maryland can also use its anchorage sites in the Port of Baltimore, Mid-Bay, and Annapolis area anchorages to “lighter transfer” petroleum products from large ships onto barges so the product can be delivered into smaller ports.
MDOT State Highway Administration (SHA)
- SHA has looked into current fuel levels at state facilities via the fuel supplier and does not expect any impact to the agency at this time.
- If fuel becomes low in any areas, SHA will ask the supplier to expedite delivery. If unavailable, fuel will be moved among facilities.
- The appropriate SHA staff members have been notified of the situation and asked to keep fuel conservation in mind while continuing to deliver the expected level of service to customers.
Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA)
- The MDA Weights and Measures program will prioritize investigation of consumer complaints related to gas pump operations, functionality, and questions of accuracy.
Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA)
- MEMA is coordinating state agencies to determine operational priorities, and has activated the Maryland Business Emergency Operations Center to provide information to the private sector and assess any needs.