Gas prices were just beginning to ease down before Hurricane Katrina damaged oil refineries in the Gulf. 12 On Your Side has been sorting rumor from fact and has the latest on what’s behind the increase.
First, there are multiple major refineries in the Gulf still not operating after Katrina hit. But now on top of that this major east coast pipeline called the Colonial Pipeline is without power and has shut down. The pipeline runs from Houston, through North Augusta, and all the way up the east coast. On the way, the pipeline supplies essentially every gas company up the east coast. That includes Pilot gas stations.
Regular gas started at their Augusta station at I-20 yesterday at $2.49 a gallon, it hit $2.79 by noon today and was expected to climb over three dollars this week.
A spokesman for Pilot says without the pipeline operating, they may not be able to make gas deliveries to all their stations on time. He says the pipeline should be back up by this weekend but there is no guarantee.
Pilot says there’s not a gas shortage now, what might happen in the future isn’t entirely clear.
Colonial Pipeline is trying to restore power possibly even using generators. But in the meantime, we have to try to find the lowest price on our own. Visit southcarolinagasprices.com and georgiagasprices.com to track gas prices at local stations.