The hacked pipeline has been restarted. Here’s what it means for you

The Story: Colonial Pipeline has recovered from the ransomware attack that shut down its pipeline and has restarted the line. The pipeline is a major supplier of gasoline to the East Coast.

In Case You Missed It: Colonial Pipeline suffered a ransomware attack last week that led to a shutdown of the pipeline. While the company worked to fix the problem and restart the pipeline, consumers panicked and began filling their tanks early as well as filling any fuel container they could get their hands on. This panic-buying caused a gas shortage.

What the restart means for you: Now that gas is flowing in the pipeline once again, both gas supply and gas prices should start to return to normal. However, the panic-buying and gas-hoarding will make that take longer since gas stations have less supply than they would have had if motorists had been buying gas at their normal frequency.

According to Colonial Pipeline, following the restart, it will take several days for the product delivery supply chain to return to normal. Some markets served by Colonial Pipeline may experience, or continue to experience, intermittent service interruptions during the start-up period. Colonial says it will move as much gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel as is safely possible and will continue to do so until markets return to normal.

What you should do: Because gas supply is low, prices will be up until supply normalizes. Fill up your tank when you need gas or if you are planning to go somewhere that requires a full tank. Don’t hoard gas. Since the issue has been addressed and supply has restarted, there is no reason to panic-buy. It may still seem like there is a gas shortage, but is due to public panic. Now that the pipeline has restarted, we know the supply will return to normal.

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