Four states have announced an emergency over gas shortages and the recent shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline played a role in that. The pipeline had to shut down after an attack but soon it was able to get back online but it would take days still for the distribution to return to normal for gas around the U.S. in some regions. There are already many stations that have run out entirely and long lines that have been forming from people that have rushed to try and fill up.
Now some might be faced with the choice of choosing which trip to make or not because they are trying to conserve gas at this time. But experts in the United States right now say the gas issues do not stem from a supply issue, there is a lot of gas to go around and meet the demand in the country. There are several factors impacting distribution though and the pipeline shutting down was one of them. The Colonial Pipeline is responsible for the distribution of gas to a significant portion of the U.S. and if it were to shut down for an extended period of time then that could have made the gas situation much worse. Thankfully it is back up and running now and the distribution should be getting better but it is a guessing game of when everything might return to normal.
As for Colonial Pipeline they had to pay about $5 million in Bitcoin to the hackers. The pipeline might already be back to normal operations but some stations are still facing gas shortages. In North Carolina, right now, for example, there are a large number of gas stations that do not have any fuel. If the pipeline would have been closed any longer that could have had a severe impact on the overall distribution in the country. It shouldn’t be that much longer though for things to return more to normal experts suggest.