Colonial Pipeline shutdown: Expect gas shortages to go away by Memorial Day, expert says

Colonial Pipeline shutdown: Expect gas shortages to go away by Memorial Day, expert says

Colonial Pipeline said Wednesday that it has resumed gas pipeline operations after it was forced to halt after being hit with a cyberattack last week.

The shut-off of the pipeline, the primary fuel conduit serving the East Coast, spurred many people on the East Coast and in the Southeast into panic-buying — with some hoarding gas — and drained supplies at thousands of gas stations.Average gas prices are above $3 and some stations in the Southeast are running out or low on fuel.

Across North Carolina, for example, 71% of stations were out of gas as of Wednesday evening, according to fuel-savings app GasBuddy. In the Atlanta area, it was also about 71%.

Although there was no gasoline shortage, there was a problem getting the fuel from refineries on the Gulf Coast to the states that need it, and officials were scrambling to find alternate routes to deliver it.

The Colonial Pipeline, which delivers about 45% of the fuel consumed on the East Coast, runs from the Gulf Coast to the New York metropolitan region, but states in the Southeast are more reliant on it. The pipeline transports 2.5 million barrels of petroleum a day, including gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, home heating oil and fuel for the U.S. military.

It the largest oil products pipeline in the United States.

The pipeline resumed operations Wednesday and the company said Thursday morning it was operational in the majority of its markets and expected to return service to all markets by mid-day.

“That should mean things will return to normal by the end of the weekend,” Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said in a tweet.

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Source: USA Today

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