Colonial Pipeline restarts operations after massive hack – San Bernardino Sun

Kathy Busewitz, Ben Finley, Tom Foreman Jr. | Associated Press

Clemmons, NC — The largest fuel pipeline in the United States resumed operations on Wednesday, a few days after being forced to shut down by a hacker gang.

Due to the disruption of the colonial pipeline, distribution problems and panic buying at gas stations in the southeast have depleted thousands of gas stations, creating long lines. The Colonial began resuming pipeline operations late Wednesday, saying that “all lines, including sidings that were being run manually, will return to normal operation.”

However, the company said it would take several days for delivery to return to normal.

Meanwhile, drivers have found gas stations with little or no gas in some southeastern states.

The colonial pipeline, which supplies about 45% of the fuel consumed on the east coast, was hit by a cyberattack by hackers on Friday, locking computer systems and demanding a ransom to release them. The hacker had no control over the operation of the pipeline, but the colonial shut down the pipeline to contain the damage.

The attack again raised concerns about the country’s critical infrastructure vulnerabilities.

“You’re not feeling a supply shortage or a supply problem. We’re having a transportation problem,” said Jeanette McGee, a spokeswoman for the AAA Automotive Club. “We have enough supply to fuel the United States for the summer, but the problem we have is to deliver it to those gas stations because the pipeline is down.”

The pipeline extends from the Gulf Coast to the New York metropolitan area, but the southeastern states are more dependent. There are more sources in other parts of the country. For example, a significant amount of fuel is delivered to the northeastern states by large tankers.

Jammer Gattison, 36, was filling a tank in Norfolk, Virginia on Wednesday before seeing a doctor.

While waiting in line at 7-Eleven, a construction worker said, “I’m running out of gas, so I can’t help it.”

“I’m also a Uber Eats driver, and I need gas for that,” he said.

In North Carolina, 65% of gas stations were out of fuel, according to Gasbuddy.com, a technology company that tracks real-time fuel prices across the country. Just outside Raleigh, while discussing their location in line at a marathon gas station on Tuesday, the two fought face-to-face with each other, spit, and then charged with assault, officials said. I was charged.

North Carolina Democratic Governor Roy Cooper urged people to buy gas only when tanks were low and report cases of price cuts on Wednesday.

He tweeted after Colonial announced that it would resume the pipeline.

According to Gasbuddy.com, Georgians were also under pressure, with 43% of stations running out of gas. In Virginia, 44% of stations were down, and in South Carolina, 16% were fuel-free.

Along the steepest and most remote Appalachian Trail in the southeast from Georgia to Maine, hikers use a car-van shuttle to and from the trail to return to civilization.

“If I don’t have gas, I’m not running,” said Ron Brown of Ellijay, Georgia. He runs Ron’s Appalachian Trail Shuttle from Atlanta’s airport to the mountains of northern Georgia, and from many points along the trail.

Mary Goldberg, 60, in Norfolk, Virginia, waited more than 20 minutes on Wednesday for a slow-moving pump to fill a tank at Seven-Eleven. Her work includes delivering T-shirts for events and other promotional items.

“I can’t get paid until the customer gets the product,” Goldberg said.

The turmoil is occurring at a time when Americans begin to become more mobile, especially as the country exits the pandemic.

Each pump at Circle K in Clemmons, North Carolina was lined with four to five cars. Some people said they drove to multiple gas stations to find out what they had gas. On the other side of the street, the gas station was running out of fuel.

Mare Martinez, who works in the landscaping, was filling up the lawn equipment and trucks after checking a few other gas stations that were unlucky.

“That’s why we came to fill everything today,” he said.

Jonathan King, who works for a local towing company, was full of tow trucks. He said he typically makes 10-12 service calls a day and drives between cities in some areas.

“It will be very difficult for us. Hopefully we will be able to overcome it,” he said.

Several U.S. agencies have relaxed the rules and adjusted to allow trucks, trains, or ships to transport fuel faster, but these changes had little impact on Wednesday. did.

According to the White House, the Department of Transportation now allows pipeline-serviced states to use interstate highways to transport overweight gasoline and other fuels. However, due to the shortage of truck drivers nationwide, the industry cannot put more trucks on the road.

There are approximately 121,000 convenience stores nationwide, selling approximately 5,300 gallons of gasoline per day, accounting for approximately 80% of retail fuel sales. Jeff Leonard of the National Association of Convenience Stores said in a conference call with reporters that demand at many stores is two to five times higher than normal. In some parts of Florida that aren’t dependent on pipelines, retailers have also run out of fuel, he said.

Distribution was imposed after several natural disasters, including Hurricane Sandy in 2012, but this time it could resist, especially if the pipeline seems likely to return to normal operation in a few days. There is sex.

It can also backfire. “The distribution will result in more panic buying,” said Ryan McNut, CEO of the American Association of Independent Gasoline Distributors.

According to AAA, the national average price of one gallon of gasoline has surpassed $ 3 for the first time since Wednesday 2016. Prices began to rise each year during this time, and car clubs said Wednesday that average prices reached $ 3.008 nationwide.

“You go to some states, and you’ll see a much higher increase, especially in the South, because you’re seeing the greatest impact on petrol tension, or people’s tension. “McGee said.

Bussewitz was reported from New York and Finley was reported from Norfolk, Virginia. Associated Press writer Frank Bajak of Boston, Jeff Martin of Marietta, Georgia, David König of Dallas, and Julie Walker of New York contributed to this report.

Colonial Pipeline restarts operations after massive hack – San Bernardino Sun Source link Colonial Pipeline restarts operations after massive hack – San Bernardino Sun

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