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Drivers worry gas shortage could affect weekend travel plans

Updated: May. 13, 2021 at 5:41 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Drivers are still hunting for gas in the Carolinas. And if they can find it, many stations are still dealing with long lines.

The good news is that there is an end in sight and supply will get better every day. But could this impact your weekend travel plans?

Experts say if you plan to travel this weekend, you should be prepared.

As of Thursday, GasBuddy says about 68 percent of stations in North Carolina are without fuel. The company expects that could be down to 50 percent by the weekend. But that still means half of gas station will still be empty.

Some drivers are now being forced to reschedule.

“Got my tires put on the car, got my oil changed, got new washer fluid and then the gas thing,” said Emily McClain.

The ‘gas thing’ is a shortage sweeping across the south east after the Colonial Pipeline shut down and caused drivers to panic buy. Now, many gas stations are empty, leaving drivers like McClain without a choice.

“What should I do? Should I try to take the risk and see if I can fill up my gas tank here? What are the options,” she asked.

She decided the risk wasn’t worth it. But she needs to get back to Virginia soon for a DMV appointment. If she doesn’t get there, she could lose her license.

“I’d be in a terrible situation where my license would be in jeopardy because of gas,” she said.

John Moore is a sophomore at Western Carolina University. he’s supposed to drive back to Charlotte this weekend. But his plans have changed because of the gas shortage.

“I’ve been saying to my parents, I’m going to wait until Friday because I have nothing going on and I can definitely go out and try to hunt gas,” he said. “As long as we don’t have gas, I won’t be able to do that.”

An expert with GasBuddy says things a majority of stations should have fuel by Memorial Day.

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