Colonial Resumes Shipments at Greensboro Hub After Gasoline Tank Fire

Colonial Pipeline Co. said it resumed normal operations after a fire that erupted early this morning at a tank farm in Greensboro, North Carolina, causing the company to temporarily halt pipeline deliveries in and out of the hub.

Operations returned to normal as of 11 a.m. Eastern time, Colonial spokesman Steve Baker said in a telephone message. “The disruption in service is not anticipated to affect supplies,” he said.

Product deliveries on pipelines in and out of Greensboro, the largest tank farm on the company’s pipeline system, were stopped earlier in the day as a result of the fire, according to Baker.

The blaze, which may have been caused by a lightning strike, started at around 1 a.m. and was put out with foam at about 7:15 a.m., he said.

The fire occurred at a 40,000-barrel capacity tank that was half filled with gasoline, Baker said. Fire hoses were initially trained on nearby tanks to stop the blaze from spreading, he said.

The Colonial system, the largest pipeline linking U.S. Gulf Coast markets and East Coast markets, delivers an average of more than 2 million barrels a day of gasoline, home heating oil, aviation fuel and other refined products through 5,519 miles of pipeline to 267 marketing terminals across the southern and eastern U.S.

Service was down on some of the lines to the Northeast as a result of the fire, while many of the smaller lines don’t operate on the weekend, Baker said. “It’s nothing that can’t be made up,” he said.

The Greensboro site is a “major junction” for Alpharetta, Georgia-based Colonial, said Baker, who is based in Atlanta.

To contact the reporter on this story: Paul Burkhardt in New York at pburkhardt@bloomberg.net.

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