ATLANTA — Drivers across metro Atlanta are paying higher prices than average for gas and waiting in long lines to fill up.
A pipeline leak in Alabama is causing outages at the pumps.
Some drivers are finding bags around the pumps that are already out of fuel. Others are waiting in long lines and paying more money to fill up their tanks.
It’s all because of leak that happened 10 days ago on the Colonial Pipeline in Alabama.
AAA said that is what is driving up gas prices.
In Acworth, the price for gas is still less than $3 a gallon, but at a Texaco gas station in College Park, it was $4 a gallon.
Many stations along the Perimeter in DeKalb County still have gas.
The most expensive Channel 2 Action News crews spotted Monday was $2.99 per gallon of regular gas, although BP at I-285 and north Peachtree Street only had premium gas for sale at $3.59.
Some gas stations were selling for as low as $2.39 for regular, which, according to AAA, is the average for metro Atlanta.
Texaco at Chamblee-Dunwoody was only letting customers buy $20 worth of gas Monday afternoon.
The owner told Channel 2's Steve Gehlbach he only got half his expected shipment on Sunday and does not know when more will be delivered.
Many drivers were seeking gas during the Monday morning commute, even if they were not on empty yet, just to try to avoid prices that may get even higher.
"I’ve got about half a tank, but thought I better fill up," one driver said.
"I was on (empty) and figured there’s no reason to take a chance,” another driver said.
The owner of the station who set the limit at $20 said he did it to stop people from hoarding gas.
We’re learning about what he saw one customer do that triggered his action, on Channel 2 Action News starting at 4 p.m.
State of Emergency issued
Gov. Nathan Deal has declared a state of emergency, but for the “limited purpose” of suspending caps on the hours fuel truck drivers can work.
The move is intended to keep them on the roads longer to “ensure the uninterrupted supply” of gas while the pipeline is fixed, according to the order.
Gov. Nathan Deal
The order prevents gas sellers from raising gas prices higher than the percentage that they’re paying for it.
The state of North Carolina has also put its price-gouging law into effect.
A representative from AAA who tracks fuel prices says we'll likely see spotty outages at stations until the pipeline is fixed and back open, which is expected later this week.
"The analysts that we've spoken to really say there's enough gas supply available; however, it’s tightened up a little bit, so it's gonna take a little longer for those trucks getting to the stations, filling back up, and that gasoline being available for motorists,” Garrett Townsend said.
Experts say there's no need to panic, or rush out to buy gas. They say that is what may be causing some of the outages.
"This is really what we hope is just a blip in a radar and (that) those prices will continue to retreat through the fall, which is normally what they do,” Townsend said.
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