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Commerce Commissioner: “We do not have a fuel shortage” in Mississippi

Photo by SuperTalk Mississippi News

As photos and reports of long lines at gas stations across the state continue, Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce Andy Gipson is reiterating that “panic buying” is not the answer.

The Colonial Pipeline, which remains shut off due to a cyberattack, makes up less than 30% of Mississippi’s fuel supply, according to Gipson. With plenty of other sources of fuel, Gipson says that state’s supply will hold as long as the public doesn’t panic.

“The biggest problem is the panic buying. We have gas stations that never bought a drop of oil from Colonial that are drained dry because people are just making a run on the gasoline and diesel fuel…Just buy what you need, don’t make a run on it because that makes it worse for everybody,” he said.

Gipson further explained that other suppliers are working to bolster their supplies and flowing more oil to limit the impact of the Colonial situation. Additionally, the EPA has temporarily waived the ‘summer blend’ requirement to allow fuel suppliers to run the ‘winter blend’ to provide more fuel to the public.

Gipson says this will likely be a “week-long” event with Colonial hoping to get back up and running by Friday. In the meantime, the commissioner urged you to use common sense and not to panic.

“In a lot of ways, it’s like the great toilet paper crisis of 2020, people just buying everything on the shelves and not leaving anything for anyone else…In the meanwhile, let’s just buy what we need…We do not have a fuel shortage, we just have a temporary supply disruption that’s being addressed in the near term,” Gipson said.

According to Fox News, Virginia, North Carolina and Georgia are among the hardest hits states. As the situation continues to unfold, Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch is warning you about the possibility of scams and price gauging.

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