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    Williams Cuts Shipments

    Midwestern fuel supply nears capacity.

    TULSA, Okla. -- The Williams Pipe Line Co., a division of The Williams Cos. Inc., has cut deliveries in its oil products system in the U.S. Midwest through at least the end of February, a Williams spokesman said.

    The company will re-evaluate at the end of the month to determine how long the cuts will last, according to spokesman for Williams Energy.

    In addition to its pipeline division, Williams operates a network of 60 travel centers in the Midwest.

    Months of low demand for diesel fuel and gasoline have led to an oversupply in the U.S. Midwest, despite cutbacks in refinery runs in the U.S. Gulf Coast and the Midwest. There is danger of a backup of gasoline and diesel fuel supplies in the U.S. Gulf Coast as a result of the Midwestern oversupply.

    Williams wouldn't offer specific figures on how much it has told its customers to cut their shipments on the 9,000 miles of pipeline that includes 39 terminals in 11 states from Oklahoma to Minnesota.

    The company said that 87-octane gasoline has a storage capacity of about 7 million barrels in the Williams system, and that there is now about 6.8 million barrels. Williams' stated diesel fuel capacity is about 4.5 million barrels, and for the past two weeks Williams has carried more than 5 million barrels in the system.

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