CORTLANDT, N.Y. ‒ Lines of cars waiting for gas backed up onto streets in the Town of Cortlandt and Village of Croton Thursday, jamming traffic on Routes 6 and 9A and stretching around Annsville Circle.
In the aftermath of what some are calling "Superstorm Sandy," gas stations without power were unable to pump gas, while others were overwhelmed, running out of gasoline and diesel fuel. Officials reopened the Port of New York and New Jersey on a limited basis to help ease the gas shortage.
At Annsville Circle, eyewitnesses reported watching motorists cross the Bear Mountain Bridge from Rockland into Westchester to gas up at the bottom of Bear Mountain Bridge Road.
Other gas stations had only certain fuel grades or were rationing. An employee at Buchanan's Shell station said he's only selling $50 worth of gas to each motorist.
Sgt. Brian Brophy of the New York State Police, who was at Buchanan's Shell station filling up, was asked whether he'd heard reports of fights erupting at gas stations.
"Not around here yet," he said, "but I could see it happening. I would guess what's going to happen is people trying to cut lines." He mentioned that a moment earlier a situation has developed where one motorist cut in front of another in the line.
"Hopefully, it'll be another few days and everything will be back to normal," he said.
Those filling gas cans for home generators may still be in the dark by next week, however. Cortlandt Town officials said Con Edison revised estimates for getting the entire town back on the grid to Friday, Nov. 9. Previously, the utility estimated the town would be back online between Wednesday, Nov. 7, and Saturday, Nov. 10.
"People are starting to get a little agitated," said Peter Melomo, a Cortlandt resident filling his tank. "Given all the stuff that everybody else is going through, we're all pretty lucky," he said, referring to northern Westchester.
Judy Guadinier, who lived near the station, said she drove through Peekskill and waited 15 minutes in line before refueling at Buchanan's Shell station. "They're all crazy. Peekskill's all jammed," she said. Another person at the pump said the Buchanan Shell had the shortest line in town.
On Route 6 in Cortlandt, a Mobile station ran out of gas as The Daily Voice was interviewing employees at 1 p.m. Thursday. The Citgo across the street was also out of gas. Attendants at both stations said they didn't expect a delivery until "maybe" tomorrow.