Despite rumors, there is not a gas shortage: Officials say North Texas stations will resupply fuel soon following post-hurricane demand

Some gas stations around the state have reported lines.

Some gas stations around the state have reported lines.

Motorists across North Texas are hunting for gas stations that still have fuel while eating the cost of increased prices.

Brad Douglass, CEO of Douglass Distributing based out of Sherman, Texas, said Hurricane Harvey is responsible for affecting 31 percent of the refinery capacity in the United States. Many facilities have shut down, and productivity on others have slowed, he said.

“They’ve closed the refineries, and the refineries supply [the Dallas-Fort Worth area] through pipelines, so when you stop pushing product through the pipelines, you literally have millions of gallons of fuel stranded in the pipelines because there’s nothing in the pipes,” Douglass said.

He asked for motorists to be patient.

“Don’t panic - we have plenty of motor fuel, it’s just our inability to resupply every store right now,” Douglass said. “The stores will be resupplied. There’s plenty out there.”

He said he expects fuel supplies to return to normal within a week.

In the meantime, AAA Texas is encouraging all drivers to be prepared.

“Drivers are encouraged to plan ahead for any road trips and should not allow their vehicle’s gas level to fall below a quarter of a tank,” said Daniel Armbruster, AAA Texas senior public affairs specialist. “Despite the country’s overall oil and gasoline inventories being at or above 5-year highs, until there is clear picture of damage and an idea when refineries can return to full operational status, gas prices will continue to increase.”

AAA Texas Weekend Gas Watch reported the statewide gas price average in Texas is $2.26 for a gallon of regular unleaded fuel. It is a four-cent increase from Wednesday’s average prices, and is 12 cents more per gallon compared to Thursday of last week.

Of the major metropolitan areas surveyed in Texas, drivers in Dallas are paying the most on average per gallon at $2.37, while drivers in Beaumont are paying the least at $2.17 per gallon, according to the report.

Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton said in a press conference Thursday that Texas is missing out on about 2 million barrels of gasoline, but he emphasized that there are still 238 million gallons of gasoline in storage. There is not a supply issue, he stressed, there is a logistics issue.

Sitton attributed the hunt for fuel to a self-fulfilling prophecy for people who speculated that fuel supplies would run low, and spread their concerns to friends and family members.

“They’re taking gas tanks, suburbans and they’re filling up,” Sitton said. “That’s six to seven times the demand on every gas station. The big issue is people trying to get their hands on every gallon they can. My advice is if you can go three or four days without gasoline, hold off. Don’t stand in line. This is going to stem.”

Douglass said the demand for gas will result in “spot outages,” and this spike in prices and harder-to-find fuel will be only temporary. If drivers cannot find fuel at one station, he said they need to keep driving and find another.

“Just keep looking,” he said.

That is what many drivers at the Shell Station at the corner of Preston Road and Lebanon Road in Frisco had to do. On Thursday, drivers waited up to two hours to get to a gas pump, with lines extending out to the roadway and wrapping around the building. By noon, the station was out of gas.

“This is crazy,” Amber Pineda said as she filled her car. “The station by my house was out of gas completely. I’m going to be late for work, but they’ll understand. They know it’s like this everywhere.”

One thing drivers will not have to worry about is price gouging, Douglass said. Because gas stations post the station’s prices in big numbers on outdoor signs, all a competitor has to do is look down the street to get a perspective on where prices should be.

“We’re all in this thing together,” Douglass said. “And people have a long memory of this kind of abuse, if somebody does decide to price gouge, people remember that.”

Click here to search for whether gas stations in your area have fuel.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to include comments from Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton.
SHARE THIS STORY


MOST RECENT

Those who are guests of the overnight warming station are registered, fed a hot meal and given a place to stay for the night, according to a Salvation Army informational handout.
McKinney warming station without hosting location until Dec. 21

The McKinney Overnight Warming Station is not set to open until Dec. 21 this year.

Cocktail Creamery closed its location inside the Red Canoe Bake & Brew but is looking to reopen in a new location soon. (Courtesy Cocktail Creamery)
Alcohol-infused ice cream shop Cocktail Creamery closes temporarily, looks to open new location soon

Cocktail Creamery closed its location inside the Red Canoe Bake & Brew on Nov. 14.

The Texas Department of Transportation has announced north- and southbound lane closures on US 75 on Nov. 14-15. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Lane closures on US 75 to take place Nov. 14-15 in Collin County

Driver's can expect US 75 lane closures Nov. 14-15, according to The Texas Department of Transportation. 

TxDOT presented its preferred US 380 alignment in May. (courtesy city of McKinney)
City sets guiding principles for development of US 380 alignment in McKinney

McKinney City Council approved a resolution setting guiding principles for the development of a US 380 alignment during an Oct. 15 City Council meeting.

Infinity Realty Partners and Brahma Title & Escrow expect to open a new corporate headquarters at 299 E. Eldorado Parkway, McKinney in spring 2020. (Rendering courtesy Craig Anderson)
Infinity Realty Partners and Brahma Title & Escrow to open new corporate headquarters in McKinney

Infinity Realty Partners and Brahma Title & Escrow expect to open a new corporate headquarters at 299 E. Eldorado Parkway, McKinney in spring 2020.

The McKinney Urban Transit District has allocated $270,000 for funding of a new pilot program that will allow people facing certain hardships free transportation service. (courtesy Adobe Stock)
McKinney Urban Transit District allocates $270,000 toward pilot program allowing free transportation for eligible riders

The McKinney Urban Transit District set aside $270,000 for the implementation of a “hardship” pilot program, during a Nov. 13 board meeting.

The city of McKinney has been selected to host one of the Drum Corps International tour stops at its McKinney ISD stadium next summer. (courtesy city of McKinney)
McKinney ISD stadium selected to host Drum Corps International competition next summer

The city of McKinney announced Nov. 13 that it has yet again landed a major event at its new $70 million stadium.

Graphite Pencil   Paper is now open in downtown McKinney offering a variety or pencils and stationary. (courtesy Graphite Pencil   Paper)
Graphite Pencil + Paper now open in downtown McKinney

Graphite will offer a wide variety of pencils from international and national brands, as well as sharpeners, erasers, stationary, stickers, cards, books, socks, t-shirts and more.

The city of McKinney has hired a new Assistant City Manager, named Kim Flom. (Cassidy Ritter/Community Impact Newspaper)
McKinney hires Kim Flom as new assistant city manager

Kim Flom, who is packing 15 years of municipal government experience, has been hired as the new Assistant City Manager for the city of McKinney, according to a city news release.

family walking in the park at sunset
Collin County community leaders campaign for complete count during 2020 Census

Collin County community leaders want to raise awareness of the importance of having a complete count of the area's population.

Cryo N More is now open in McKinney and offering services such as extreme cold treatment. (courtesy Cryo N More)
Cryo N More now open in McKinney, offering extreme cold treatment, tanning

The store offers cryotherapy, which activates the body’s natural healing system by exposing it to extreme cold, according to the website. Cryo also offers normatec compression and tanning.

CBD: What is it and is it legal in Texas?

Is CBD legal? CBD, or Cannabidiol is

Back to top