Georgia Governor Deal urging normal fuel use after Colonial Pipeline explosion in Alabama

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Alabama Explosion Photo by Brynn Anderson, AP Photo_236378

HELENA, Ala. (AP) – The Latest on Alabama pipeline explosion and possible gasoline shortages (all times local):

11:15 a.m. – Georgia’s governor says state residents shouldn’t overreact to the chance of gasoline shortages after an explosion shut down a pipeline supplying the Southeast.

Gov. Nathan Deal on Wednesday urged people to stick with normal fuel usage rather than stocking up and causing a spike in demand.

A September leak on the same pipeline caused stations to run dry and increased prices in Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee and the Carolinas.

Deal says he’s hopeful that Colonial Pipeline will respond quickly and minimize any issues. Company officials have said their goal is to restart the line as early as this weekend.

Deal on Tuesday issued an executive order lifting restrictions on the number of hours that commercial truck drivers delivering fuel can work. The order also triggered Georgia’s prohibition on price gouging.

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1:07 a.m. – Executives at a pipeline company say their goal is to restart the line as early as this weekend after an explosion and fire shut down gasoline shipments to millions across the South.

The deadly explosion sparked a geyser of fire Monday and closed off the vital pipeline, raising fears of another round of gas shortages and price increases. It’s Colonial Pipeline’s second accident and shutdown in two months.

Continuing fires in the drought-stricken area of central Alabama hampered officials’ efforts to fully assess the damage Tuesday afternoon, and firefighters built an earthen berm to contain the burning fuel.

The Georgia-based company says the accident happened when a dirt-moving track hoe struck the pipeline, ignited gasoline and sparked a blast, killing one worker and injuring five others.

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