Panic buying causing temporary fuel shortage in South Florida

As news of the Colonial Pipeline hack and subsequent temporary shutdown spread to South Florida, gas stations have been strained. Our gas supply doesn’t rely on the pipeline, but some drivers weren’t taking any chances.

“My peers were slightly panicked and I’m 2/3rds full, but I figured if there was no line, I can top it off,” Giselle Cohen from Jupiter said.

But there was no gas to be had at this Jupiter Shell station.

Gina Stephen is close to an empty tank.

“Looks like all the pumps are blocked you can’t get gas anywhere,” she said.

Ninety percent of our gas in Florida comes from the Gulf of Mexico, so Mark Jenkins from AAA says if everyone takes what they need, our supply will be fine.

“My message to Floridians right now is: stop it. Remain calm. Florida has plenty of access to gasoline. We are not reliant on the Colonial Pipeline for our fuel.”

Steve Matz, also from Jupiter, says gas demand like this reminds him of when a hurricane is bearing down on our area.

At least then, there’s a potential for the supply chain to break.

“I think it’s unfortunate because fear is three times stronger than facts. So you have to keep reminding yourself of the facts.

As gas stations are on empty, Cohen says she will limit how much gas she and her family use.

“My husband and I decided until this panic is over, because I figured this is exactly what’s going on, we are going to carpool,” she said.

So far, prices have gone up but only some. According to AAA, the state average is $2.89, a few cents lower than the year high in late March.