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Gulf hurricane causes panic at the pumps in 2008

Prices recover to lowest since 2004

POSTED: January 7, 2009 4:00 a.m.
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The highest gas prices in U.S. history translated to chaos and panic across Dawson County last September when the nation saw gas climb to between $4 and $5 a gallon, after Hurricane Ike shut down refineries and halted fuel production.

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Gas is currently at the lowest it has been in almost five years, but that was a different story in September when the nation saw gas climb to between $4 and $5 a gallon, after Hurricane Ike shut down refineries and halted fuel production.


The result was chaos and panic across Georgia and in Dawson County.


Lines stretched south on Ga. 400 for gas at Kroger, leading Manager Jay Walker to spend many days and evenings directing traffic through the crowded shopping center to the gas pumps.


The high volume of consumers made it nearly impossible for area stations to maintain their gas supplies, as drivers filled and topped off their tanks, as well as brought in additional canisters for reserves.


Although few reports of aggression at the pumps were made in Dawson County, law enforcement stayed busy during the crisis, monitoring traffic at gas stations and trying to keep motorists from parking along roadways to wait for their turn at the pumps.


The situation became so dire at the end of September that the Environmental Protection Agency waived the more stringent requirements for fuel distributed in the Atlanta area in an effort to cushion fuel supply while gasoline production was limited in Houston.


The Governor’s Office of Consumer Affairs received more than 1,300 complaints of price gouging from across the state, including at least one station in Dawson County, where motorists claimed a station on Hwy. 9 posted gas at close to $6 a gallon in mid-September.


Gas is now at the lowest it has been since February 2004, ranging between $1.50 - $1.55 a gallon.


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