Gas distribution issues in the Southeast because of Colonial Pipeline shutdown

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NEW ORLEANS — The ransomware attack that shut down the Colonial Pipeline will have implications on both gasoline supply in the Southeast, and along the Gulf Coast.

“The shutdown will definitely have an impact on those areas that get their gasoline from Colonial Pipeline. We are talking about states from Mississippi to Tennessee to Georgia and all the way to Delaware. There will be a regional impact for sure,” Don Redman with AAA said.

AAA says because of the Colonial Pipeline shutdown, gas prices in our region could go up and there will be gas distribution issues. Louisiana — should be okay.

“There will be some outages. I think a number of states won’t get their supply of gasoline. There’s already a shortage of tankers because many tanker drivers were laid off during COVID and this is the perfect storm,” Redman said.

Driver Jasmine Thomas doesn’t want to pay more at the pump because of the shutdown and she’s making sure her gas tank is topped off.

“Just get it while you can. Don’t drive as much as you can to save,” she said.

Another driver Joshua Wilder understands the pain of paying more at the pump.

“Being from San Diego, gas prices are between $4.75 and $4.85 a gallon, so reaching $3 a gallon is not a good thing, but it is not California yet,” Wilder said.

As for panic buying because of a gas shortage, AAA says resist the urge.

“Just have a lot of patience and flexibility. It may be a good couple of weeks before the whole thing is worked out to get the gas flowing,” Redman said.

Currently, gas is being distributed from Europe.

The Biden-Harris Administration has now launched an all-of-government effort to address the Colonial Pipeline incident.

This includes an “Hours of Service” waiver to provide greater flexibility to the drivers transporting the fuel to ensure that the fuel gets to the communities as quickly as possible.

This waiver includes both Mississippi and Louisiana.

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