Thu. May 26th, 2022

The Minister of Public Security acknowledged that although not everyone would abide by the rules, he is convinced that “the overwhelming majority” would do the right thing.

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Long queues and empty shelves greet some British Colombians trying to buy groceries and gas.

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Within hours of Secretary of State for Public Safety and Attorney General Mike Farnworth announced an order limiting unnecessary vehicles to 30 liters of gas per trip to the gas station, there began to appear postings on social media showing gas stations filled with cars and people not adhering to the 30-liter limit.

“Not convinced that the gas rationing is going well – at the pump before me, the person bought 44 liters,” wrote Twitter user Brianne Melnyk.

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At a news conference Saturday morning, Farnworth acknowledged that while not everyone would abide by the new rule, he was convinced that “the overwhelming majority” of British Colombians would do the right thing.

The order, which runs from November 19 to December 1, applies to all fuel suppliers in the Lower Mainland to Hope region, Sea to Sky region, Sunshine Coast, Gulf Islands and Vancouver Island. Violations are subject to a $ 2,000 fine.

Essential vehicles will have unrestricted access to fuel, mainly through commercial truck stations that use the card lock system.

Farnworth noted that gas station operators were working to implement a 30-gallon lid on gas stations to help with enforcement.

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“It’s crucial that we make sure that (gas) is available for the emergency services and for the ability to move and transport goods around,” Farnworth said.

Pictures of empty shelves in grocery stores also began to fill social media feeds, including in Burnaby, where at least one Save-On-Foods “temporarily limited quantities of demand goods” such as eggs and milk.

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The catastrophic weather system that hit the southwest BC. and parts of the interior last week, displaced as many as 17,000 people, caused landslides that cut off critical traffic routes, created devastating floods in places like Abbotsford and Merritt and have resulted in at least four deaths.

The floods and mudslides cut off highways and disrupted supply chains, including the Trans Mountain pipeline, which created temporary shortages at the pump as the government works to bring more fuel in through new routes.

Farnworth said the county was considering all options to address the fuel shortage, including shipping fuel by barge from as far away as California.

He also said the province has asked the federal government to move up the date in BC for when PCR tests are no longer needed for trips of less than 72 hours, which would allow British Colombians to cross the border for gas. As it stands now, the restriction will not be lifted until 30 November.

– With files from Cheryl Chan and Gordon Hoekstra

ngriffiths@postmedia.com

twitter.com/njgriffiths


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