Propane shortage could raise heating bills in Georgia

7:44 AM, Feb 6, 2014   |    comments
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Money saving tips for your heat bill this Winter

(WXIA) -- This week, Georgia joins the list of states suffering from a lack of propane during a cold winter. States in the Midwest and Northeast began experiencing a shortage earlier this year.

Atlanta-based Georgia Gas Distributers, Inc. is shipping in propane from Texas to make up for the lack of local supply. It's the first time in at least 20 years this has happened, according to the company.

"It's the supply and demand issue that we're experiencing. Literally overnight, our costs went up dramatically. It was a week ago that this all started," said Georgia Gas Distributors Vice President Lynda Humm.

If you have propane heat, your bill will likely go up and it's possible you may even find your provider puts you on a waiting list.

Propane also fuels some forklifts and other shipping vehicles, which means construction costs and even food prices may be affected.

"If those forklifts aren't running, product isn't being shipped out of factories, warehouses and distribution centers, food won't end up in stores. The ripple effect is huge," Mark Dmochowski said.

To avoid unexpected cost increases, Georgia Gas Distributors suggests signing up for a budget plan to commit to a stable payment year round, not only in the cold months. Filling your tank in small doses before it gets to the halfway mark will help ensure you're not left on empty.

"The best thing that could happen to us is warm weather. Until warmer weather comes in and stays this supply situation is going to continue," Dmochowski said.

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