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Mexico suffers gasoline shortages because of pipeline thefts

January 13, 2015

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico’s state-owned oil company acknowledges that pipeline thefts have gotten so bad they’re causing gasoline shortages in some states.

The Pemex oil company says thieves repeatedly drilled illegal taps into pipelines carrying gasoline from refineries to distribution centers in north-central Mexico.

The company often has to shut down or reduce pressure in pipelines to repair the damage caused by illegal taps.

Pemex said it had increased the number of tanker-truck runs to deliver gasoline. But the company said that trucks can’t replace pipelines in the long term, and are much more costly way to distribute gasoline.

Thieves drilled around 2,500 illegal taps in the first nine months of 2104, and stole more than $1 billion in fuel.

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