GAS

The Covington News - - Local news -

their sup­plies re­main low Tu­dor said. Still New­ton County is bet­ter off than many other parts of Metro At­lanta when it comes to gas sup­plies he said.

Reg­u­lar un­leaded was re­tail­ing any­where from $3.95 to $4.19 at eight New­ton County gas sta­tions on Tues­day, ac­cord­ing to GasBuddy.com.

The av­er­age price of un­leaded in Metro At­lanta on Tues­day was $4.01, down from $4.02 on Mon­day but up from $3.59 a month ago, ac­cord­ing to AAA. The na­tional av­er­age is cur­rently $3.72.

Gas prices can be ex­pected to rise quickly in the next cou­ple of days fol­low­ing the largest sin­gle day spike in oil prices, where price per bar­rel in­creased by $20, Mon­day. The jump is at­trib­uted to in­vestors’ fears that the an­tic­i­pated $700 bil­lion fed­eral bailout of the fi­nan­cial sec­tor will cause inflation.

At the BP gas sta­tion on Pace Street, all gaso­line was sold out ex­cept for the pre­mium grade which was re­tail­ing at $4.28.

BP sta­tion man­ager Sam Ji­wani said the sta­tion was com­pletely out of gas from Sep. 13 to 15. On Thurs­day they re­ceived some reg­u­lar un­leaded only to com­pletely sell out of it by Satur­day.

“We don’t know when we will get un­leaded,” Ji­wani said, adding he hoped to re­ceive more later in the week.

Tu­dor said un­leaded is typ­i­cally the first grade to sell out dur­ing gaso­line short­ages.

Mike Thorn­brugh, man­ager of pub­lic and gov­ern­ment af­fairs of QuikTrip, said of the com­pany’s 111 gas sta­tions in Metro At­lanta, be­tween 40 and 50 of them are cur­rently out of gaso­line.

He said he did not have a timetable for when all of the QuikTrip sta­tions would be sell­ing gas again though he hopes things will be nor­mal again by next week.

“Ob­vi­ously with all of the re­fin­ery prob­lems down the pipe­lines, then just the huge surge of peo­ple buy­ing gaso­line, the sys­tem is just strained be­yond be­lief,” he said.

An­a­lysts say the gaso­line short­ages across the South­east should dis­ap­pear in the next week, once Gulf Coast re­finer­ies re­sume nor­mal pro­duc­tion lev­els. For now, the ma­jor pipe­lines de­liv­er­ing fuel to many parts of the east­ern United States are ready for ship­ments — the sup­plies just aren't avail­able.

"I think it's a tem­po­rary sit­u­a­tion, but con­sumers shouldn't be shocked if sta­tions in their area run out of prod­uct," said Ben Brock­well, di­rec­tor of data, pric­ing and in­for­ma­tion ser­vices for the Oil Price In­for­ma­tion Ser­vice in Wall, N.J. "The sup­ply sys­tem was crit­i­cally dis­rupted, and you can't shut some­thing down and ex­pect it to get started back smoothly without there be­ing some af­ter­shocks."

Exxon Mo­bil Corp. said Mon­day its re­fin­ery in Bay­town, east of Hous­ton, was pro­duc­ing gaso­line at re­duced lev­els as units re­gained power. The Bay­town re­fin­ery is the na­tion's largest.

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