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Traffic, Long Gas Lines Left in Sandy’s Wake

Mahwah residents are left looking for places to refuel as most of the township's gas stations ran out of gas Wednesday

By Wednesday evening, most Mahwah gas stations were either out of gas, or serving hours-long lines of customers searching for gas to either fuel their cars, or the generators powering their homes.

Mahwah police officers were stationed at township gas stations to control the crowds, while traffic snarled many of the township’s roadways as more residents began emerging from their homes after the storm.

Lines of cars were seen waiting along Franklin Turnpike and Route 17 all day waiting for gas.

By about 5 p.m. Wednesday, all stations along Franklin Turnpike had sold out of gas except for the Gulf station, which was rationing off the last of its supply.

“I have been waiting in line for about two hours,” Cathy Merritt, who traveled from her home in Upper Saddle River to the Mahwah Gulf to get gas. “I was the last one, the cut off. After me they were going to stop pumping gas.”

Many North Jersey residents like Merritt were on the hunt for gasoline Wednesday. “My husband is commuting to help with the clean-up in Hackensack and East Rutherford. We needed to have a tank of gas in this car,” she said.

Mahwah township officials sent out a Nixle text message alert Wednesday evening addressing the gas issue in the township.

“The impact of the Hurricane on the gas terminals along with power outages at gas stations has resulted in long gas lines and in some cases gas shortages,” the alert said. “Traffic congestion on Franklin Turnpike today was significant.”

Thursday morning, the township sent out an alert that several township gas stations had gas and were open, but residents should expect delays.

The lack of fuel coming from the region’s main ports, in Newark and Elizabeth, has caused gas shortage concerns throughout the county. Bergen County officials are working with municipalities on how to continue to fuel recovery efforts while state and federal officials reported working on getting gasoline into the area.

But, for many Mahwah residents, the most pressing concern remains where to find gas now. 

So, if you have found a station that is pumping gas, let your neighbors know in the comments below.

fastharry November 01, 2012 at 11:21 AM
Southbound valero.....filled up last night in about 15 minutes @ 11 pm..
Jessica Mazzola (Editor) November 01, 2012 at 12:52 PM
MPD sent out an alert this morning - Pilot Route 17 South- Valero North and South - Mahwah Sunoco - Gulf 17 Southbound - Are open and have gas, but Expect Delays
Richard Levine November 01, 2012 at 01:25 PM
It looks like long lines, day and night. I live just off Pompton Lakes exit of Rt. 17N and the cars are backing past the exit. Looks like the 1970s gas shortage.
Alice November 01, 2012 at 01:28 PM
It took my husband an hour at the northbound valero for my car @ about 8pm last night. This morning he did his car at the pilot at about 7:30 am in about 20 min. He said the pilot had a man directing the traffic and was way more efficient. I guess we will be happy the pilot is there now :)
Tom Murphy November 01, 2012 at 02:22 PM
I have not been able to respond to Company 1 for fire calls. It is a major issue for all the volunteers north of Miller Rd. I hope this can be resolved soon or at least Olney Rd is reopened to volunteers trying to respond.
Bill Goffredo November 01, 2012 at 02:50 PM
I drove to Harriman last night..north of Woodbury Commons there are several gas stations open and I waited 5 minures...it is only a 20 minute ride from Mahwah and I felt it was worth it. Besides, it was nice to see what electricity looked like again...
Constancio Almeida November 01, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Any reason why supplies from other state cannot be truck/tankered in?
nativemawah November 01, 2012 at 04:39 PM
Mahwah Sunoco gas station was the only one to raise their prices . How can you do that to your own home town! Every where else was 3.53 .
Mark Herrmann November 01, 2012 at 06:38 PM
While I understand people need to get gas, but the traffic created by the lines is ridiculous. On Franklin Tpke yesterday, the cars blocked driveways and all while a police officer stood by and chatted with the people on line. Traffic laws still need to be enforced. If people can't get in or out of parking lots, what impact will that have on those merchants?
Tom Murphy November 01, 2012 at 08:18 PM
After my earlier post I can say the Police and Fire Police have done a really good job of keeping Franklin Tpk moving today. Hats off to both groups. Secondly the price at Sunoco maybe changed by a penny or two. I passed it many times in past few days and the price is inline with what it has been for past few weeks. Thank you to all the Mahwah gas station owners for not taken advantage. Also kudo's to A&P that has actually done sale prices on some essentials and putting them right in front of the store. This is an epic disaster and things are going to be different for a while.
Alexis Brown November 01, 2012 at 09:15 PM
there are 3 gas stations in Oakland that are currently open. they are the delta, lukoil, and gulf stations. All three are on route 202
JoeH November 02, 2012 at 02:32 AM
That is criminal. Read this article about price gouging complaintsvand then please complain!
Mark gentile November 02, 2012 at 05:27 AM
Just wanted to say that the pilot station on 17 south did it right..... They had a guy directing people to the pumps.... Great job by the management staff on organizing and executing
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