North Alabama gas stations seeing impacts from Colonial Pipeline shutdown

Some gas stations across Madison County have already run out of gas.

Posted: May 11, 2021 3:21 PM
Updated: May 11, 2021 4:27 PM

Impacts from the Colonial Pipeline shutdown are already being seen in North Alabama. Some gas stations have already run out of gas as people rush to fill up their tanks worried things may get much worse later this week.

On Tuesday, gas stations around Madison County had plenty of people at the pumps. Some gas stations are not yet having any outages, which made some consumers WAAY 31 spoke to happy.

"I commute each way to work probably about 25 miles, so it goes through gas quickly," Christian White, who lives in Madison, said.

White said hearing about the shutdown made him come fill up his tank Tuesday, so he doesn't get into a sticky situation later in the week.

"Usually, I'm the type of person that waits until the tank's already on E before I get my gas filled, but today, I'm about a quarter of a tank, wanted to top it off now before I get stuck having to get to work and not have gas available or having a shortage," he said.

It was a completely different story at a Chevron less than two miles down the road, where both the supreme and plus were out. The gas station clerk told us on Monday afternoon, they ran completely out of gas. On Tuesday morning, they did have a shipment come in and they have another one scheduled for Thursday, but they said it's iffy if that one will arrive. They told us they are hoping it does so they don't run completely out again.

"I was a little nervous because I only had half a tank, so I was like, I know it's going to get busy, obviously everything is full, so it's a little nerve-wracking honestly," Iwalani Ferguson, who lives in Madison, said.

Like White, Ferguson says limiting travel isn't possible for her. She said seeing gas stations nearby having outages already worries her since she has to commute.

"Not being able to get to work on time, running out of gas in the middle of the road," she said.

Experts say for that reason, people should only fill up their tanks if absolutely necessary.

"It's imperative that instead of hoarding gasoline in these areas, that motorists simply park their cars for a few days and conserve as much as possible," Patrick De Haan, head of Petroleum Analysis at Gas Buddy, said.

Work to get the pipeline back operating is already in the works. Colonial says they hope to reopen by the end of the week.

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