Gas prices in Iowa are on the way up because supplies are down. Dawn Carlson of the Petroleum Marketers of Iowa says the terminals in Iowa that’re connected to pipelines ran out of gas this weekend and gasoline is now being trucked in from other states.
"This is an issue that’s going on in other states, not just Iowa," Carlson says. "We’ve been out of gas here in Iowa since Sunday. Transport companies are going to other states, trying to find gasoline for Iowa consumers now." Colorado terminals have been out of gas for three weeks.
One of the reasons for this supply problem could be the fire that damaged a refinery in Oklahoma. "Most of our product comes from the Gulf and comes up through Oklahoma and Kansas, so that could have an impact," Carlson says. "…This time of year we’re also facing the transition called ‘turn-around’ when all refineries have to draw down their inventories and kind of clean house so they can starting making the new product that’s required by the federal government. Certain times of year they have to switch products and that always has an impact on supplies that’re available."
Carlson also notes that demand for gasoline is higher right now than it was at this time last year. "All these different factors are coming together to cause quite a strain on our supplies right now," she says.
Carlson cautions consumers against hoarding gasoline, because that would make things worse. "The worst thing consumers could do is panic right now. Don’t be going out and topping off your tanks," Carlson says. "We’ve got a lot of transport companies in Iowa that are willing to go to other states and go wherever they need to to find gasoline and make sure that every retail location out there does have inventory, so it’s just a little blurp in the system right now and we’ll work our way through it."
There are no reports of gas stations in Iowa running out of fuel.