U.S. gasoline shortage eases, but pumps dry in some areas

Gasoline shortages that have plagued the U.S. East Coast slowly eased on Sunday, with 1,000 more stations receiving supplies as the country’s largest fuel pipeline network recovered from a crippling cyberattack.

The six-day closure of Colonial Pipeline’s 5,500-mile (8,900-km) system was the most disruptive cyberattack on record, preventing millions of barrels of gasoline, diesel and jet fuel from reaching fuel tanks throughout the Eastern United States.

Thousands of gas stations ran dry as supplies failed to arrive and drivers fearing a prolonged outage filled tanks and jerry cans. Refiners and fuel distributors are racing to recover before the Memorial Day holiday weekend at the end of May, the traditional start of the peak-demand summer driving season.

“Colonial Pipeline is currently shipping at normal rates, based on shipper nominations,” company spokesman Eric Abercrombie said in an email. “It will take some time for the supply chain to fully catch up.”

In Washington, D.C., about 80% of stations were still empty, according to tracking firm GasBuddy.

Elsewhere, more than half of the stations were still out in North Carolina, while less than half of stations were without fuel in South Carolina, Maryland, Virginia and Georgia, GasBuddy data showed.

Source: Reuters