Published: Sat, September 02, 2017
Money | By Oscar Reynolds

Harvey Forces US's Largest Refinery to Cut Output to 60% Capacity

Harvey Forces US's Largest Refinery to Cut Output to 60% Capacity

The National Weather Service's 4 a.m. update reports Harvey make its second USA landfall near Cameron, Louisiana, in the pre-dawn hours of Wednesday.The storm continued moving to the NNE (30 degrees) at 7 mph with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph. As of 7 a.m. CT, the slow-moving storm had picked up some speed moving north, and its center was about 25 miles away from Lake Charles, Louisiana.

Thousands of people are without water in Beaumont, Texas, adding to the misery of extreme flooding that has left large swaths of it and neighboring towns underwater. The confirmed death toll climbed to at least 31 on Wednesday, including six family members - four of them children - whose bodies were pulled Wednesday from a van that had been swept off a Houston bridge into a bayou. Earlier Tuesday, it was running at 60% capacity.

Even as the sun began to show in Houston on Wednesday, signaling a bit of relief after days of devastating rainfall from Tropical Storm Harvey, a region east of the city faced disaster anew after it was pummeled by rain overnight. And there are steep challenges in coping with evacuees using an infrastructure that's been crippled.

Refineries in some area of Texas hit hard by Harvey were trying to start up though problems with restoring power were delaying their efforts. "Improving weather conditions to come!"

A Houston mother is warning people in the area to stay out of Harvey's floodwaters after her son was electrocuted while wading through the water to check on his sister's home. It becomes the largest rescue center able to hold 10,000. The storm is expected to weaken as the center moves back on shore and will begin to move more rapidly to the northeast through the lower Mississippi Valley, eventually reaching the Tennessee Valley on Thursday.

The city has organized dump trucks to drive through neighborhoods, instructing anyone who needs help to be on the lookout for them - and to use a white sheet or towel to signal a need for rescue.

Harvey made its third landfall, just west of Cameron, Louisiana, today at 4 a.m. Motiva, which is owned by Saudi Aramco, the state-owned oil company of Saudi Arabia, said it was dealing with restrictions in the flow of crude oil coming in and products such as gasoline going out through pipelines and ports.

Widespread flooding was reported throughout the Beaumont-Port Arthur area Wednesday morning. "The city's pumping system has been under scrutiny since flooding earlier this month exposed infrastructure failures and unreported maintenance issues", NPR member station WWNO reports.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton told CNBC that they have received more than 500 complaints of price gouging over the weekend and during the storm.

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