Could a shortage in gas truck drivers impact summer travel plans?

Published: Apr. 30, 2021 at 10:50 AM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Some gas stations could run out of gas this summer, not because of a gas shortage, but because there aren’t enough people to deliver it.

Clay Ingram with AAA stresses that there is plenty of gasoline and crude oil out there.

In fact, he says our gas supplies are as strong as they’ve ever been, but there is a shortage of skilled truck drivers who can transport the gas from storage facilities to gas stations, and that has a lot to do with the pandemic.

Ingram says at the beginning of the pandemic, demand for gas was very low because most people were staying at home and weren’t leaving the house unless it was absolutely necessary.

As a result, many gasoline truck drivers lost their jobs.

Many of those drivers moved on to find other jobs.

Now things are starting to get back to normal and demand for gas is high again. But trying to lure the former truck drivers back has been challenging.

And not just anyone can drive these tankers, they must undergo several weeks of training, and the job requires a special certification.

Still, many want to know if this truck driver shortage will this impact their summer travel plans.

“Probably not. We might see a few stations that temporarily run out of gasoline for a half a day or a day maybe, but even if we do see that, it’s likely to be sort of a chain-oriented situation. In other words, it might be Shell stations or BP station that are having those issues potentially,” Ingram explained.

Ingram says the truck driver shortage is fairly small right now, but if we do run into a situation where one gas station temporarily runs out of gas, odds are a station across the street or down the road will have plenty.

He says he doesn’t foresee a major problem with this, and doesn’t believe gas prices will increase because of it.

Copyright 2021 WBRC. All rights reserved.

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