The cost to fill up in Churchill, Manitoba, will go up by as much as 50 cents a litre in the next day or so , a 30 per cent jump. The cost of gasoline in Churchill is currently $1.70 per litre.
Rail company Omnitrax informed officials in the isolated community on Wednesday it had exhausted its supplies of less expensive fuel stored in the northern town, and would have to raise its price.
Usually, fuel such as gasoline for vehicles and propane for heating would arrive in the Hudson Bay community by rail, but a flood in May washed out the tracks.
Omnitrax, the federal government and the province have been trying ever since to decide whose should fix the line.
n emergency delivery of 300,000 litres of gas arrived by ship in July — an effort that cost 30 per cent more than by rail — but Omnitrax said it would keep the price at the same rate until the inventory ran out.
The company said in a statement, “We have reached that point today.Unfortunately, we are unable to delay the cost increase any further.”
Omnitrax cancelled another load of fuel destined for the community by ship earlier this month. The company and the Manitoba government were in a dispute over the safety of storage tanks Omnitrax owns in a facility next to the port.
Premier Brian Pallister told reporters Wednesday he sympathized with the residents of Churchill, but stuck to a now-standard response that the primary responsibility for the rail line and port was in the hands of the federal government.