The Haut-Rhin oil depots encountered fuel supply difficulties, from July 13 to 23, 2021. The recent flooding of the Rhine that prevented deliveries was in dispute. The situation is back to normal at gas stations.
Many motorists last week had difficulties getting fuel in Haut-Rhin. The recent events of bad weather in Alsace were at the origin of this situation. Heavy rains caused the Rhine to overflow. Navigation on the river had to be interrupted.
Because of this event, between July 13 and 23, 2021, the oil depot in Mulhouse was not delivered with fuel, director Corentin Engelberg explains. As of Monday, July 26, the issue has been resolved.
Fuel usually arrives in this section by river from Germany, Holland or Strasbourg. But heavy rain prevented that. “The level of the Rhine rose so high that the barges could no longer pass, so we had to live on our reserves”, Refers to Corentin Engelberg.
As a result, the company no longer has unleaded diesel, gasoil, and unleaded gas oil to supply to carriers that are concerned with connecting service stations. As for the latter, it is therefore necessary to adapt. “We had to go as far as Dijon to look for fuel. So it obviously costs us more than 300 km instead of 30 and that also lengthens delivery times,” Details of Peggy Koehler, Principal of Klinzing.
Unusual phenomenon in summer
Transport companies and oil depots have managed to adapt, but the situation is not all that familiar. “It is very rare in summer that floods occur from the Rhine, ” Constitut Peggy Koehler. “The drought in the summer usually forces us to go and refuel more.” The most recent flooding incident that slowed supply dates back to February 2021.
But not all supply points depend on the Rhine. “We won’t run out of fuel in Haut-Rhin for a week, for example”, Corentin Engelberg is reassured. “Rhine floods are a phenomenon that will occur more and more in the future due to global warming. Therefore, we must think of long-term solutions”, he adds.
Among the solutions it offers, there is, for example, the improvement of barge technology. It can have a flat bottom to allow oil to be transported even in times of drought. Or even create water storage basins for heavy rains and reorganize the logistics warehouse in Mulhouse.
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