TEMA: Don't panic, no gas shortage in Tennessee

Some gas stations in East Tennessee ran low on fuel today, but authorities say it's being caused by people being overly cautious about a recent pipe closure.

The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency says there is no reason for Tennesseans to panic about the gas supply in Tennessee. 

TEMA's Executive Officer Dean Flener told 10News today that as long as people continue their normal gas usage habits, there is no reason to worry about a shortage. He said the only threat is if people begin panicking and consuming more gas than normal. 

Flener also stressed the importance of not filling unapproved containers with gasoline, as that can cause major safety concerns. 

This comes one day after Governor Bill Haslam declared a state of emergency so that he could issue a waiver for federal service hour requirements for gasoline drivers. 

Previous story: Gov. Bill Haslam is waiving the federal hours of service requirement for petroleum transporters to prevent any fuel supply disruptions in Tennessee in the wake of the Colonial pipeline leak in Shelby County, Ala.

Haslam issued Executive Order #56 Friday afternoon.

"This is a precautionary measure as we are not currently seeing any widespread unavailability of petroleum in Tennessee,” Haslam said in a press release. “We urge Tennesseans to maintain their normal fuel purchasing and driving patterns to help prevent any potential impacts on our fuel supply while the pipeline undergoes repairs.”

The emergency declaration allows drivers to work longer hours to make sure fuel is available to convenience stores, fuel retailers and fuel wholesalers throughout the state. It only applies to fuel transportation for this state of emergency. 

State agencies are monitoring the petroleum supply and will address any supply disruptions in Tennessee, the release said. 

(© 2016 WBIR)


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