A propane shortage in Colorado is not impacting a main supplier in Cortez.
Fraley Co. has a full supply and is meeting customer demands, said General Manager Kelly Gagneaux.
He said Fraley’s main propane supply source from the Williams Gas Pipeline Co. plant in Ignacio has “been running steady. The shortage has not affected us at all.”
Fraley recently expanded its storage capacity to serve its 3,000 customers and has added five 60,000 gallon tanks.
“We have sufficient supplies,” Gagneaux said.
He said demand has recently increased because of the cold weather, and added that Fraley brings on an additional driver in the winter to handle more deliveries.
On Dec. 25, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper declared a disaster emergency because of a propane shortage that could leave 33,000 customers without enough fuel during winter.
Hickenlooper’s declaration temporarily relaxed restrictions on how many hours propane truck drivers are allowed to work. It allows propane companies more time to move propane from other areas through Dec. 8, when the declaration expires.
State officials blamed the shortage on production problems at Colorado propane facilities. Suppliers have begun to bring in propane from out of state, requiring longer trips for delivery drivers.
As of Dec. 31, propane storage in Colorado was at 2.7 million barrels, down from 3 million barrels the week before, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
Requests for comment to other propane suppliers in Southwest Colorado about the shortage were not returned.
Members of the Dunlap family, south of Summit Lake, said they have had trouble getting a needed propane delivery from their supplier, Amerigas. The family’s 500-gallon tank is down to 15 percent, and they rely on the gas for heat and cooking.
A recent expected delivery did not occur, said Jason Dunlap Friday, and they are seeking another source of propane.
“We probably have about a week’s worth left and have been turning down the heat to conserve,” he said. “Hopefully we will make it through.”
In a Facebook post response to this article, Dunlap later said that Amerigas had shown up to fill the family propane tank.
AmeriGas is not experiencing propane shortages in Colorado, said Justine Staub, director of communications for AmeriGas Propane.
AmeriGas Propane is the largest propane retailer and serves all 50 states, she said. The company has a “vast array” of resources to draw upon to ensure customers are kept in supply when a particular geography is constrained, she said.
“We have our own fleet with more than 250 long-haul tanker trucks, 500 of our own rail cars, a network of 22 of our own terminals and access to 250 supply points nationwide,” Staub said.