Fact Check: Gas shortage this summer? | WHEC.com

Fact Check: Gas shortage this summer?

Nikki Rudd
Created: May 04, 2021 05:50 AM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — We made it to the month of May. Memorial Day is right around the corner. Are you planning a trip? You might have heard rumors about potential gas shortages. 

News10NBC's Nikki Rudd saw the headline on Twitter: "A gas station near you might be short on gas." 

We went to AAA to get some answers. 

"There have been rumors about gas shortages. What's going on?" Rudd asked April Engram from AAA of Western and Central New York. 

"During the height of the pandemic travel slowed dramatically," explained Engram. 
 
She says because of the decrease in demand for gas during the pandemic a lot of tank truck drivers who deliver the gas were laid off. Many of them found other work. Now, more drivers are back on the roads and demand for gas is back up. 

"Select cities are seeing low to no fuel in their local pumps because they can't get the deliveries on time," Engram said. 

AAA claims this has not happened around here in Western New York. Experts also want to point out: this is not a fuel shortage. 

"There is enough supply nationwide to meet with an increased demand of travel now," said Engram. "We just need drivers to help get the gasoline to the station."
In the cases where gas stations had low to no fuel in some markets, AAA reports it was usually only for one to two days and most of these cases were contained within a brand or chain. 

If you are planning to travel this summer, here are some tips from AAA to help improve fuel economy:

  •  Minimize your use of air conditioning. Even at highway speeds, open windows have less effect on fuel economy than the engine power required to operate the air conditioning compressor.
  • Plan ahead to accomplish multiple errands in one trip, and whenever possible travel outside high-traffic times of day.
  • If you own more than one car, use the most fuel-efficient model that meets the needs of any given journey.
  • In hot weather, park in the shade or use a windshield sunscreen to lessen heat buildup inside the car. This reduces the need for air conditioning (and thus fuel) to cool down the car.
  • Remove unnecessary and bulky items from your car. It takes more fuel to accelerate a heavier car, and the reduction in fuel economy is greater for small cars than larger models.
  • Minimize your use of roof racks and remove special carriers when not in use. On the highway even an empty bike rack can reduce fuel economy, and a loaded rack or car-top container will have a major effect on gas mileage.

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