Tanker truck driver shortage causing gas stations to run out of fuel


COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Before heading out this summer, you may want to fill up on gas where you can because some gas stations are running low.

However, that is not because of a shortage of supply, but rather a lack of drivers being able to deliver it.

“So refineries are actually churning out millions of gallons of gasoline every hour, it’s just getting it to the station as quickly as motorists are filling up,” said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy.

De Haan said refineries are producing close to 97 percent of the all-time high records for gasoline.

However, according to the National Tank Truck Carriers, somewhere between 20 to 25 percent of tank trucks in the fleet are parked due to a scarcity of qualified drivers.

“Things have slowly reopened and demand for gasoline continues to go up, and very much like other industries right now that are facing labor challenges, truck drivers are hard to come by as well,” De Haan said.

So what does this mean for those looking to travel this holiday weekend?

According to De Haan, there’s no need to cancel your trips, but be aware of your tank and fill up where you can.

“If you find a station that has bags on the pump, it’s probably more of a needle in the haystack,” he said. “I’ve seen some of these stations that do have bags on their pumps, it’s just a matter of timing. They may be without fuel for an hour, maybe three hours, but probably less than 48 hours. It’s just stations trying to catch up to demand.”

Gasoline experts also said this should not have an effect on prices since production has remained consistent.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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