Officials caution against gas hoarding amid outages in Middle Tennessee, plus resources on where to find fuel

Officials are urging residents not to hoard gas during a regional shortage. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Officials are urging residents not to hoard gas during a regional shortage. (Courtesy Fotolia)

Officials are urging residents not to hoard gas during a regional shortage. (Courtesy Fotolia)

With several gas stations in Franklin, Brentwood and the Middle Tennessee region reporting fuel shortages as a result of a cyberattack on the Colonial Pipeline, state and local officials are cautioning residents against hoarding gas.

According to the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, drivers should only take what they need, so as not to cause more outages.

The agency is recommending drivers use GasBuddy, a crowd-sourced map of local gas stations, to identify which stations still have fuel. This information has also been shared via the Williamson County Emergency Management Agency's social media pages.

Drivers can also report outages using the website to let other nearby residents know.

With so many local stations reporting shortages, the price of gas is likely to rise as well, according to AAA. As of this week, the national average price of gas per gallon rose by $0.06, and it is expected to climb higher, as the Colonial Pipeline provides nearly half of all fuel on the East Coast.

AAA estimates prices could rise by another $0.03-$0.07 per gallon.

Local businesses are already working to adapt to the shortage. Bill Nishanian, owner of Nash Painting, which serves the Franklin and Brentwood areas, said his 15-vehicle fleet has already begun to conserve gas, but he worries the shortage could temporarily stop business.

"Our crews are out today and using the Gas Buddy app to identify stations with fuel, but we're actively strategizing how we'll move forward if this issue continues and worsens," Nishanian said in an email. "We're streamlining trips and cutting out any non-essential travel."

According to AAA, once the pipeline is restored, it could take several days to restore supply.

In the meantime, drivers can take some steps to conserve gas, such as avoiding high-traffic areas, minimizing air conditioning use and reducing trips.
By Wendy Sturges
A Houston native and graduate of St. Edward's University in Austin, Wendy Sturges has worked as a community journalist covering local government, health care, business and development since 2011. She has worked with Community Impact since 2015 as a reporter and editor and moved to Tennessee in 2019.


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