Hurricane Harvey may be battering the coast over 450 miles south, but the residents of Texoma and the Dallas area are feeling some of the effects. Harvey blew through the southern part of Texas, shutting down nearly a quarter of refinery capacity. Hearing this news has caused a state-wide panic for fuel.
Hundreds of gas stations from Dallas up to Van Alstyne are out of fuel due to people rushing out to buy gas before the “shortage.” Dallas alone is feeling the wrath of the fuel shortage panic, but it has reached all the way up to the northern cities, too. The 7-11 off of White St. in Anna said they were completely out of fuel in a phone interview. Even the Shell stations in Van Alstyne’s pumps have been bled dry.
On a positive note, it seems as if the Sherman stations have been unaffected, so far. The Circle K station on the corner of FM 1417 and Hwy 75 currently still had few several days into the panic.
Additionally, not all of the stations in Dallas are out of fuel, though some of the stations are hiking up the price of fuel. A Shell station off of Addison Rd. in Addison raised the gas to over $4 per gallon. A representative of the store was not available for comment.
Representatives of fuel distributers are asking for the people to calm down, saying that ironically, the people panicking about the fuel shortage are actually the ones causing it. “We ask all of our neighbors to make fuel purchases as you normally would,” a press release from Douglass Distributing stated. “The worst thing we can do as a community is all of us showing up at one time to get fuel. This creates an additional challenge for each delivery.”
Douglass informed the public that the shortage is indeed a result of the southern refineries being temporarily closed. However, Douglass said they still have access to plenty of fuel. Douglass does not expect the shortage to last longer than 1 week, the release stated on Thursday, Aug. 31.
“There is no outage,” the report stated. “There is fuel.” The lines that the delivery trucks have to wait in to be filled are longer due to the refineries being shut down. Douglass wants people to know they are working to solve the problem. “We want to assure everyone that we have all of our delivery trucks running 24 hours, resupplying our local communities in Northeast Texas and South Eastern Oklahoma.”
Texas Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton said the problem is supply and logistics. In a report from WFAA channel 8, Sitton said once the rumors of a fuel shortage start, it spurs a rush to the gas stations. This action starts a snowball affect; from the stations seeing a higher demand than usual to causing the stations to run out of fuel.
The CNN money website states it is a fact that Harvey has affected gas production. Before Harvey hit the south, Americans were using less fuel than what was being produced, CNN reported. However, once the refineries were knocked offline, it reduced production to around 7.7 million barrels per day, while Americans consume around 9.7 million barrels per day.