Propane drivers granted emergency exemptions - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Propane drivers granted emergency exemptions

Posted:

Stanley (WQOW) - Propane drivers across the state are free from legal restrictions on driving hours this week because of an emergency order from the governor.

The cold temperatures and propane customers cranking up the thermostat play are the main cause of this order.

"It's an interesting year, little bit colder," says Stanley Oil Company's Fuel Manager, Dale Sleznikow.

And colder outside, means turning up the thermostat inside.

But for 250,000 Wisconsinites who depend on propane to heat their home, the demand has been taking a toll on trucking.

"We never had a supply issue, there was always plenty of propane, the problem was they can only supply so much.  Normally a terminal will fill their local storage tanks," says Betsy Ahner, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Propane Gas Association.

"We're a small company and I think we work hard for our customers and we want to make sure that we don't run anybody out," says Sleznikow.

So until Sunday propane transport drivers are exempt from laws limiting their hours to 70 per week.

"They needed to be able to drive on the weekend, but they would have totally been out of hours.  So this emergency declaration allowed them to drive on the weekend as well to get caught up," says Ahner.

Because this trickle effect from propane lines to transports to home delivery drivers burned up some of their reserves.

"We had to pull from different terminals than what we normally do, just because there were some shortages," says Sleznikow.

With all the extra hours this week, the state is seeing supplies return to normal levels.

"You always try to anticipate that and try to keep yourself on the full side so you're not running low and short," says Sleznikow.

It's not a strategy that's used often; in fact, it's been four years since the last executive order allowing longer transportation hours for propane.

"We don't like to do that because we know it's not safe for people to be out on the road when they're tired," says Ahner.

Another solution could be right at the touch of your hand, if you adjust the thermostat.

"We've certainly had years much, much colder than this," chuckles Sleznikow.

Some Northeastern Wisconsin propane companies have even had to drive down to Illinois to keep up with fuel demands over the past week.      

Here in Western Wisconsin, terminals say they're supplying smaller distributors to the best of their ability at this time.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Sleeping girl killed after car drives into home

    Sleeping girl killed after car drives into home

    Sunday, April 20 2014 7:42 PM EDT2014-04-20 23:42:54 GMT
    Officials say a 16-year-old Southern California girl asleep in her bed has died after a driver accused of being drunk crashed his SUV into her home.More >>
    Officials say a 16-year-old Southern California girl asleep in her bed has died after a driver accused of being drunk crashed his SUV into her home.More >>
  • Country music singer Kevin Sharp dies at age 43

    Country music singer Kevin Sharp dies at age 43

    Sunday, April 20 2014 7:33 PM EDT2014-04-20 23:33:21 GMT
    Kevin Sharp, a country music singer who recorded multiple chart-topping songs and survived a well-publicized battle with cancer, has died. He was 43.More >>
    Kevin Sharp, a country music singer who recorded multiple chart-topping songs and survived a well-publicized battle with cancer, has died. He was 43.More >>
  • Kraft recalls 96,000 pounds of Oscar Mayer wieners

    Kraft recalls 96,000 pounds of Oscar Mayer wieners

    Sunday, April 20 2014 7:42 PM EDT2014-04-20 23:42:52 GMT
    Kraft Foods is recalling 96,000 pounds of its Oscar Mayer wieners because they may mistakenly contain cheese.More >>
    Kraft Foods is recalling 96,000 pounds of its Oscar Mayer wieners because they may mistakenly contain cheese.More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WQOW. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service and Mobile Privacy Policy & Terms of Service.

Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's pubic inspection file should contact Director of Station Operations Lisa Patrow at 715-852-5920. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at fccinfo@fcc.gov.