The scramble for gasoline during July may get a bit worse in Maryland but slightly less frantic in Virgina and the District of Columbia, oil company reports indicated yesterday.
Even so, with slight variations on the scarcity theme, the gasoline shortage will continue.
Oil companies told offficials in Maryland that they would deliever an estimated 154.5 million gallons to service stations there this month. That is slightly less than the 155 million gallons the companies provided that state during June, which is one day shorter.
In Virginia, however, motorists will receive an estimated 219.96 million gallons in July, the company report said. And that is about 3 million gallons more than Virginia received during June.
The District, based on the best available estimates, expects to receive 16 million gallons in July. That would be one-half to 1 percent over the District's June supply.
"They are getting more; we are getting less," concluded Frederick L. Dewberry, one of Maryland Gov. Harry Hughes top energy advisers.
"I can't explain it," he said
"Those (numbers) are based on the oil companies' anticipated ability to deliver. They could be revised as we move into the month.
"But the revisions are always downward for Maryland. We never have had revisions upward."
Virginia officials, however, said they have received more gasoline than projected on occasion. During June, for example, the state actually received 6 to 7 percent more gasoline than companies had predicted in their preliminary reports, said Norman McTague, the operations officer in the state's Office of Emergency and Energy Services.
McTague warned, however, against painting a bright picture of gasoline supplies for Virginia. "Don't give them the idea that they should start running up and down the highway burning gasoline. They must still conserve fuel," he said.
Gasoline deliveries, when measured in actual volume, are millions of gallons below year-ago sales in the metropolitan Washington area. Maryland will be particularly hard hit.
Dewberry, the Maryland energy official, said driving habits during the summer of 1978 may have contributed to this month's gasoline pinch in his state.
Gasoline allocations, he said, reflect to some extent the amount of gas used in the state during the same period last year - and last year Maryland residents used less gas in July than they did in June.
He described July 1978 as a "normal summer month with a lot of Maryland people traveling in other areas, wherever they went on vacation."
"People are afraid to travel," he said. "People are staying home in the metropolitan areas because they are afraid they'll be stranded."
He said that minimum purchases and odd-even rationing appear to be helping to reduce the size of gas lines.But, he said, more gasoline is the real answer."
Area motorist lined up for blocks - again - to buy gasoline. At the Capitol Hill Gulf Service, Second Street and Massachusetts Avenue NE, the pumps opened at 8. a.m. They stayed open one hour.
"I don't enforce any minimum or maximum," said owner Ben Simpson.
"I let people get as much as they can in the hour that I'm open.
The line to Simpson's station was three blocks long. But that wasn't a record. At Barney Circle Shell, 1550 Pennsylvania Ave. Se, the line was six blocks long.
Colored flags, intended to help motorists distinguish stations with gasoline from those with none, were distributed to stations yesterday. Arlington reported that all 71 of its stations had been given flags.
But in the District, only 75 of the 315 stations had received flags yesterday. And few of them were visible.
There was one positive effect from the gasoline crunch. Traffic was lighter than usual.
Motorist planning how they will spend the Fourth of July received some good news from the American Automobile Association. Spokeman Jonathan White said gasoline supplies for travelers outside the Washington area, generally, will be available.
"Once outside the metropolitan area, the outlook for the holiday looks fairly good," he said.
AAA wasn't willing to predict how many stations will pump gasoline on the Fourth. "There are too many variables," White said.
Some stations will be open.
Pat O'Connor, an Exxon spokesman, said all 15 of the company-operated stations in the area will sell gasoline as usual on Wednesday.
But although oil companies said their July gasoline shipments were moving to stations on schedule, not all dealers agreed with that contention.
About one-third of the 100 gasoline stations contacted by The Washington Post Monday said they had not received their first shipment of gasoline for July. Lloyd's Exxon, 2301 14th St. NW, said the station had been "dry for four days" and cannot open until July supplies arrive.
Here is a list of gasoline stations in the District of Columbia that a city energy official said will sell gasoline between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. today, Thursday and Friday:
Pennsylvania Avenue Gulf, 2300 Pennsylavania Ave, SE; Hillcrest Shell, 2721 Naylor Rd. SE; Bill's Gulf Servicenter, 5120 Georgia Ave. NW; Jamison's Sunoco, 1253 Ninth St. NW; Melby's Gulf, 3124 Mount Pleasant St. NW; MacArthur's Service Center Amoco Station, 5101 MacArthur Blvd. Nw; Parkway Shell, 1944 Bladensbury Rd. NE; and Webb's Exxon Servicenter, 4100 Hunt P1. NE.
Fourth of July
The following stations in the District will be open from 8 a.m. to noon Wednesday, the Fourth of July:
Jack's Exxon, 801 H St. NW; Citadel Mobil, 1631 Kalorama Rd. NW; Key Bridge Mobil, 3601 M St. Nw; Connecticut Avenue Amoco, 5o01 Connecticut Ave. NW; Davis Exxon, 4501 14th St. Nw; Fort Dupont Shell, 4107 Alabama Ave. SE: Pennsylvania Avenue Amoco, 2500 Pennysylvania Ave. SE; Scott's Mobil, 4501 Bowen Rd. SE; Mason Brothers Exxon, 4854 Deane (Burroughs) Ave. NE; and Ward's Amoco, 400 Rhode Island Ave. Ne.
Following are telephone numbers of agenicies providing information to deal wth gasoline emergencies:
District of Columbia "hot line" 628-3181. An official said it will be staffed from 9 .a.m to 8 p.m.
Prince George's Country "hot line": 779-1151. An official said it will be staffed around the clock.
Anne Arundel Country "hot line" 263-2681. An official said it will be staffed from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
Howard Country "hot line": 922-2319. An official said it will be staffed around the clock.
American Automobile Association: 222-5000. Officials said AAA members may obtain small quantities of gas or be towed to a nearby station if they are stranded.
Following are telephone numbers of agencies providing information on gasoline regulations but not station openings:
Montgomery Country: 279-1776. An official said it will be staffed between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. today..
Virginia: 1-800-552-3831. An official said it will be staffed from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
New Flag System
Washington area service stations have been asked to begin displaying special flags today, noting the availability of gasoline.
A green flag means leaded and unleaded gasoline can be purchased.
A yellow flag means only leaded gasoline can be purchased.
A red flag means a station's pumps are closed.
Gas station owners in the District can pick up flags at the Munsey Building, 1329 E St. NW, Room 1258. CAPTION: Picture, Motorist line up for gas at southeast D.C. station flying green flag which means leaded and unleaded gas available. In new flag system which started yesterday, yellow means "no unleaded" and red means "no gas." By Larry Morris -- The Washington Post