Franklin County Sheetz stores run low on gas; Hurricane Sandy blamed
By SAMANTHA COSSICK
FRANKLIN COUNTY – Gas supplies at local Sheetz convenience stores have been stressed the past few days as refineries try to bounce back after Hurricane Sandy.
In the weeks that have followed the storm, there has been a “catch-up” period for refineries and gas stations, said Monica Jones, public relations manager for Sheetz.
“In the midst of Sandy, a bunch of refineries that provide oil to our pipelines in Pennsylvania were shut down,” she said. “Even though they are up and running now, it’s been a couple weeks for them to get up to speed.”
As of Sunday afternoon, only one Sheetz in the county – 5234 Philadelphia Ave., Chambersburg – was reporting it still had all three grades of gas.
Other Sheetz gas stations throughout the county in Chambersburg, Greencastle, Waynesboro, Shippensburg and elsewhere were out of 85 and 87 octane gas. All still had supplies of 92 octane gas with prices ranging from $3.73 to $3.99.
However, other gas stations around the area – including Giant, Rutter’s, Sunoco, Route 11 Pit Stop and Bill’s Kwik Chek Market – still had full gas supplies as of Sunday afternoon.
Dustin Picking, Chambersburg, didn’t hear about the possible gas shortage until Sunday morning when his father, a truck driver, informed him.
“This is new to me. I didn’t know anything about it,” he said. “I got home and thought I better get gas while I can.”
Picking had originally gone to Route 11 Pit Stop, because it is closer to his house, but said the lines there were
“ridiculous,” so he came to Sheetz in town instead.
Although he usually uses 89 octane gas, only 92 octane was available at Sheetz on Sunday, which was not an issue, he said. What worried him was if the problem continues and affects his commute to Waynesboro for work.
“I just don’t want to be running around looking for gas,” he said.
Summer Smith, Martinsburg, W.Va., works in Chambersburg and heard about the possible shortage just before getting off work Sunday. She came to Sheetz to fill up just in case.
“I live about an hour away and wanted to make sure I had enough to get home,” she said.
If the problem were to continue, Smith said she’ll stay with friends in Chambersburg so it wouldn’t affect her work schedule.
The current situation with Sheetz is a supply interruption, not necessarily an outage, Jones said. Gas is being delivered to local stores within hours to days of low supplies being reported.
“The supply chain has been stressed for weeks now and we have been working diligently behind the scenes to keep up with demand and make sure our supply stays intact. But unfortunately, because of the demand, we are behind,” she said.
Officials are hoping this will be a short-lived issue and that normal supply will return within the next few days,” Jones said.
“When it’s going to rectify itself we’re not sure. We’re hoping this is over the next day maybe even sooner,” she said. “The main thing we want people to know is our stores are still open for business. The only thing we’re not selling right now is fuel.”
Samantha Cossick can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and 262-4762.