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SE gas prices jump in advance of Ike

Gas stations across the southeastern part of the country are seeing gas prices spike this morning in anticipation of Hurricane Ike's effect on the offshore oil rigs and gas refineries along the Texas coast.

Hurricane Ike is on a path straight toward the nation's biggest complex of refineries and petrochemical plants, and that's raising worries about gasoline supplies.

Exxon Mobil, Valero Energy, ConocoPhillips and Marathon Oil are
among the companies that have stopped refinery operations on the
Texas coast.

One convenience store chain is asking customers in 11 states, including Alabama, to limit purchases to 10 gallons.

The Pantry doesn't have any supply problems yet, but it says it's trying "to head off any panic buying."

A spokeswoman says the limit is voluntary and customers have been receptive.

The Pantry owns 1,600 stores, mostly in the Southeast.

People lined up at gas stations across the wiregrass last night after rumors circulated about supply problems and price increases as much as $1.50 per gallon.

Officials say this morning there are no shortages, but that panic buying caused by those false rumors caused some service stations to run out of gas.

They say the supply lines are running normally and service stations will get their normal deliveries of fuel today.


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