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Update of repairs to Marsden Point pipeline

Media release
23 September 2017

Update of repairs to Marsden Point pipeline

Significant progress has been made to restore fuel supply to Auckland Airport, with the welds on the Marsden Point pipeline successfully passing final inspection, says Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment Chief Executive Carolyn Tremain.

“Industry officials have announced the damaged section of pipeline has been removed. Welding of the new section successfully passed the final weld inspection, and the next steps to restore flow in the pipeline are now underway.

“The pipeline is expected to be ready for jet fuel delivery to the Wiri fuel storage facility tomorrow. From there, 30 hours are needed for settling, recertification and transport to the airport, with first loading of fuel onto planes happening as soon as possible.

“Nearly all flights at Auckland Airport are operating as normal, with only five international flights cancelled today due to the fuel situation. No domestic flights have been cancelled.

“Jet fuel allocations have been increased to 50 per cent and are being reviewed daily. Supply of petrol and diesel for road vehicles is back to normal.

“The Matuku, carrying jet fuel and diesel, is expected into Wynyard Wharf later today. Fuel should be available for transport to the airport early next week, subject to quality testing. We’re confident the traffic plans we have in place for Wynyard Wharf will be effective.

“Due to the success of both the repairs to the Wiri Pipeline and the increased tempo of fuel tanker operations around the North Island, there is currently no need for HMNZS Endeavour to uplift and distribute fuel around New Zealand. Consequently, she will now be returning to Devonport Naval Base.

“HMZNS Endeavour will remain at 12 hours’ notice to sail and is prepared to respond again if required.

“The progress made in the last week is a testament to Government and industry hard at work behind the scenes to ensure Auckland keeps moving,” says Ms Tremain.

Key facts and figures
• The pipeline normally supplies the majority of Auckland’s fuel demand.
• Three trucks are going between Marsden Point and Auckland Airport twice daily, with five trucks expected on the road Monday. These trucks moved 91,000 litres of jet fuel yesterday, and will be delivering 151,000 litres into Auckland Airport today. As the trucking rate increases, the volumes of fuel delivered will also increase.
• Jet fuel due to start arriving at Wiri through the pipeline midday Sunday (full delivery of 7 million litres by late Monday). Then 30 hours are needed for settling, recertification and transport, before being available for use.
• Fuel allocations for airlines at Auckland Airport currently at 50 percent, but will be reviewed daily.
• Matuku left Marsden Point this morning, coming in to Wynyard tonight 1.5 million litres of jet fuel and 7.9 million litres of diesel.
• A fuel filter was requested from NZDF, which was delivered to Wynyard at 1pm. It will now be fitted to make ready for use. A further fuel filter is on standby at Whenuapai if required.
• Two additional ships are on the way to New Zealand. The Stena Paris is currently on its way to Lyttleton; Axios is in New Zealand waters today.
• New Zealand Defence Force Drivers are working with industry to move additional fuel around the country. Drivers are operating tankers in shifts between Wellington, Napier, and Palmerston North. In the Auckland area, drivers are also operating tankers in shifts. Further drivers are being inducted to drive the Auckland to Mount Manganui route.

© Scoop Media

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