The return of operations along the Colonial Pipeline didn’t come fast enough for some gas stations in the Nashville area.
Drivers found long lines Wednesday in parts of the city, with some stations closed altogether and others with limited options and slow pumps.
“I filled my wife’s car up this morning with regular,” said Pashay Polk, who was at a Speedway station in East Nashville, “and now there’s nothing but premium.”
Mike Duncan of Portland said he had heard about the possibility of a shortage but was still surprised to find that the pumps were running slowly. “Just trying to make it back and forth to work,” he said.
Colonial Pipeline says it will still take several days for the supply chain to return to normal. In the meantime, travel groups have been begging residents not to “panic buy,” which exacerbates the potential shock.
“So even though you might still see some of your local stations running low on fuel or out of gasoline for the time being, just know that there are alternatives in place. There is work being done in the market to transport fuel to where it needs to go,” says Megan Cooper with AAA.
Similar to other states across the country, Tennessee’s average gas prices have increased after the Colonial gas pipeline paused its operations last week. Since Monday, the state’s gas price average has risen by 9 cents, though it still stands below the national average of about $3 per gallon.
Still, fears of a shortage did lead Dickson County Schools to decide to go virtual for a couple days. The district announced the decision just before the Colonial Pipeline came back online. But the district said from the start that the move to do remote learning Friday and Monday was out of an abundance of caution.
The school system has enough fuel stored for the rest of the school year, officials said, but a couple days without district vehicles using fuel left even more available for the city government to use if emergency service vehicles begin to run low.
Tony Gonzalez, Blair McDonald and Rachel Iacovone contributed to this reporting.