Evacuations put strain on Florida gas supply

By: Field Sutton

Updated:

ORLANDO, Fla. - Gas supplies have been running short as Floridians prepare for Hurricane Irma, with an estimated 650,000 people on the move in the state, officials say.

As more people travel along the evacuation routes, supplies have been hard to predict with pumps across the area are beginning to run dry.

The cars never stop coming. At best, all the pumps are full and, at worst, lines of people waiting for gas are several blocks long. 

Read: The Latest: Florida AG fighting price-gouging as Irma looms

"There were people in Miami that were literally waiting at the gas station and there was no gas there,” said Robynne Redmon, an evacuee. “A hundred cars in line, just waiting.”

Gas has been in pretty steady supply along Semoran Boulevard near Orlando International Airport.

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Unpredictable evacuation orders are a big contributing factor to the uneven distribution of fuel across the state, according to the Florida Retail Federation.

Tankers are being diverted to areas expecting to experience the most traffic, leaving other areas on the back burner.

 

 

“And as those people head north, the fuel supplies in those areas will continue to get shorter and shorter,” said James Miller, of the Florida Retail Federation.

 

 

Watch: Gas stations work to keep up with demand ahead of Hurricane Irma

The trade association said some progress has been made in resupplying areas of the state that have dwindling supplies. They said more tankers are in from surrounding states delivering supplies.

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But once the ports close for the hurricane and new shipments are cut off, it is unknown if there will be enough supplies to keep the pumps from running dry.  

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