Carolinians are smart to be wary of Hurricane Florence’s impact on gas, after Hurricane Katrina cut supply lines from the Gulf Coast in 2005, leading to widespread shortages and consumer panic.
Lines have already begun forming this week at some gas stations, as the National Hurricane Center predicts Hurricane Florence’s winds and rain will head inland on Thursday.
GasBuddy.com has created a “fuel-availability“ tracking system for the coastal states predicted to feel the impact of Hurricane Florence in the next four days. The app alerts motorists to nearby gas stations that are out of fuel, says GasBuddy.com.
To visit the site, go to business.gasbuddy.com/florence-live-updates
It covers North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, the three states facing the greatest potential for a Hurricane Florence landfall.
On Wednesday morning, as the storm sat just over 700 miles off the coast, the Raleigh and Wilmington areas of N.C. had more than 10 percent of their gas stations reporting a fuel shortage, the app reported.
Eastern N.C. towns of Greenville, New Bern and Washington were also starting to see shortages, with 6 percent of the stations out of gas, the app reported Wednesday.
In South Carolina, the Charleston area was showing gas shortages, with just under 10 percent of stations out of fuel, said the app. Myrtle Beach on the coast had just over 3 percent of its stations reporting no gas, according to the app.
The Charlotte area has plenty of gas as of Wednesday, with less than 1 percent of stations reporting no fuel to sell, the app reported.
A gas shortage during the storm could occur for multiple reasons, including increased demand and a loss of electricity, closing some stations, experts say.