Widespread gas shortages eased in the Mid-Atlantic and southeastern United States on Saturday, but pump prices were still rising.
East Coast drivers are facing several days of crisis after the largest pipeline in the United States was shut down on May 7 after a cyber attack. The Colonial Pipeline needed until Wednesday to get the pipeline, which supplies 45 percent of East Coast fuel, to run again after the ransomware attack.
The exclusion caused a shortage that caused panic in several countries.
About 13,400 gas stations are still out of operation on Saturday, according to the GasBuddy fuel tracking app, which is 17% less than the 16,200 reported gasoline-free on Friday.
However, gas prices continue to rise, a trend ahead of pipeline problems.
The average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gas in the United States was $ 3.04 on Saturday, according to AAA. That̵
Gasoline prices usually rise in the United States before Remembrance Day, which begins the summer vacation season. Demand is expected to be high this summer as more holidaymakers choose road travel amid a protracted pandemic that could push prices further up.
The shortage this week inspired a wave of gas station fistulas, creative gas collection methods and even petty crime as Americans searched for fuel, including a Georgian man who was arrested after drilling holes in a U-Haul gas tank. A Florida driver’s Hummer exploded Wednesday shortly after loading four containers of gas from behind.
Gas demand in the United States, however, has fallen in recent days, by almost 13% in the last week, thanks to a drop in panic buying, according to GasBuddy analyst Patrick De Haan.
The number of gas stations reporting shortages in Washington has dropped to 80% from 88%, Reuters reported, citing data from GasBuddy. Virginia and North Carolina also reported fewer closed stations.