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LP gas shortage: commercial cars hardest hit

Source: Thebftonline.com
Source: Thebftonline.com

8/9/2012 3:02:08 PM -

Checks conducted by the B&FT in Kumasi puts commercial car operators as the hardest-hit by the perennial shortage of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) that has once more resurfaced across some major cities in the country.

For almost a week and over, users of LPG in Kumasi have had a tough time getting supplies of the commodity from various gas supply stations. Worst among those unfavorably affected by the shortage are commercial car operators who have had to abandon their work to join long queues at the various gas filling stations in anticipation of getting a supply to enable them operate.

The complaint of commercial car operators, however, was that the shortfall in supply of the commodity has had a heavy toll on their sales -- and for that matter, the longer they wait the more difficult it becomes for them to render sales to their car owners.

Attempts to get some filling station operators to comment on the reasons for the shortage however proved futile, but feed being picked up from the offices of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) attributes the recent shortage to power-failure which affected some mechanical parts of the topping at the distribution units of the refinery, resulting in suspension of production for certain petroleum products.

The situation has since been rectified according to reports from the NPA, with assurance to the public that normal supply of LPG will resume within a few days.

Due to the technical challenge that led to the commodity's shortfall, the NPA in attempt to arrest the situation has been sending out in excess of 1,000 metric tonnes.

The current circumstance has also adversely affected the production and other activities of some industries within the region that depend mainly on the use of LPG for their operations.

At some locations within the city, the situation has brought vehicular movement to a halt as cars waiting to refuel have been forced onto the already 'out of space' streets to join queues.

The use of gas by commercial cars in the country was not a common phenomenon until recently. Most commercial car operators have developed a strong preference for using the product rather than the other petroleum products.

Other users of LPG blame the frequent shortage in the market on commercial car operators who have now taken delight in opting for the use of LPG instead of petrol and diesel.

The debate on whether to ban cars from using LPG has been reignited within some quarters owing to the current situation, and it will take the policymakers to decide for the state.