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Heating Oil and Propane Update

FAQs for Respondents

Q1: What is the purpose of this survey?

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) Form EIA-877, "Winter Heating Fuels Telephone Survey," is designed to collect data on State-level stocks and residential prices of No. 2 heating oil and propane during the heating season. The data are used to monitor the prices of propane and No. 2 heating oil during the heating season, and to report to the Congress and others when requested.

Q2: How does the survey work?

The EIA-877 "Winter Heating Fuels Telephone Survey" requires participating States to collect residential prices for heating oil and propane once a week by calling individual heating fuel retailers. Data are collected on every Monday starting the first week of October through mid-March. Price data collected by each State are transmitted to EIA for validation, aggregation, and publication.

Q3: Where can I find published data reported by the EIA-877?

Q4: Who uses this data?

EIA provides State and Federal governments, consumers, policy makers, the press, analysts, and others with up-to-date information on retail heating fuels prices during the heating season. Winter Heating Fuels Price data continues to be one of the most requested datasets EIA produces.

Q5: There are several different prices for propane that we offer our customers. How do I know which price to provide EIA with when they call?

Propane prices are often determined by annual consumption and categorized in pricing tiers. A company should report the tier-level price based on the amount of heating fuel the majority of their residential customer's consume on a yearly basis. If relevant, the price should also be based on a leased-tank.

Q6: If I have been selected by EIA to participate in the survey, do I have to report data?

Yes. The timely submission of Form EIA-877 by those required to report is mandatory under Section 13(b) of the Federal Energy Administration Act of 1974 (FEAA) (Public Law 93-275), as amended. Failure to respond may result in a civil penalty of not more than $2,750 per day for each violation, or a fine of not more than $5,000 per day for each criminal violation. The government may bring a civil action to prohibit reporting violations which may result in a temporary restraining order or a preliminary or permanent injunction without bond. In such civil action, the court may also issue mandatory injunctions commanding any person to comply with these reporting requirements.