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AAA Advises Texans Against Panic-Buying Gasoline

Cyberattack crippled the biggest fuel pipeline in the country, run by Colonial Pipeline
A couple fills up multiple 5 gallon gas tanks at a Wawa gas station, after a cyberattack crippled the biggest fuel pipeline in the country, run by Colonial Pipeline, in Tampa, Florida, U.S., May 12, 2021. REUTERS/Octavio Jones

The American Automobile Association reports the shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline will have little to no impact on gasoline supplies in Texas.

AAA said the situation is temporary and there is not a shortage. There is ample gas supply in the United States, officials said, but it's a matter of getting deliveries to states to meet demand.

AAA urges against panic-buying.

Colonial has implemented a phased-in approach to bring the pipeline substantially back to full operation by the end of this week after it was targeted by hackers.

The pipeline's shutdown has caused gas prices to rise in some areas of the country. AAA reports as a state, Texas has the third lowest gas prices in the nation at $2.72

From NPR:

Colonial Pipeline said on Wednesday it has "initiated the restart of pipeline operations" after suffering a cyberattack, while warning it would take several days for supply to return to normal.

The restart of operations starting around 5 pm ET is welcome news across the Southeast, where the cyberattack on Colonial that led the company to suspend supplies through a critical pipeline triggered a wave of panic buying that led to severe gasoline shortages over the last two days.

The announcement comes as stations have been pumping out days' worth of fuel in a matter of hours, and a growing number are going empty. The Consumer Product Safety Commission has been begging Americans not to put fuel into plastic bags, or anything not designed to carry gasoline.

And governors have been declaring states of emergencies while pleading with residents not to "panic buy" or fill up their tanks when they don't need to — requests that so far seem futile.

The concern over gasoline availability has taken on a life of its own and sparked a self-perpetuating problem.

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Brian Kirkpatrick can be reached at brian@tpr.org and on Twitter at @TPRBrian