Verify: How will pipeline explosion impact you?

Main gas line to Atlanta shutdown until Saturday

ATLANTA - On Monday, a deadly explosion near the site of a previous gas leak in a Colonial Pipeline in Alabama has many people wondering how it will impact them in metro Atlanta. 11Alive set out to answer viewer’s questions about how the explosion.

Colonial is the largest gas supplies in the United States. It accounts for 40% of the fuel on the East Coast. The line that provides metro Atlanta with its gas has been down since the Monday explosion. The second line, which carries jet and diesel fuel, is running and may be used to provide relief to metro Atlanta. But it’s not being used yet.

RELATED | Metro Atlanta residents: Colonial Pipeline a 'good neighbor'

11Alive's Chris Hopper spoke to AAA spokesperson Garrett Townsend for more. Here are the answers to some of those questions:

Q. Will we see gas prices rise in metro Atlanta? 

An exact increase is tough to predict, but 11Alive asked Townsend when might those prices go up. Townsend went back to September when there was a leak along the same pipeline for the answer.

“It was about six days before we saw an increase in the average price, prices in Georgia,” he said. In September there was a 35 cent increase, on average, per gallon of gas according to AAA.

“There could be a minimal effect on gas prices here in metro Atlanta,” Townsend told 11Alive's Chris Hopper.

Q. Last time metro Atlanta did see outages, stations ran out of gas, could that happen again?

“It was about a week, Sept. 16, 17 when we started seeing some of the spotty outages here in metro Atlanta,” Townsend said.

The situation was bad enough that the company decided to use its second line to take some of the strain off supply. They wont decide whether to do that again until a later date

Gov. Nathan Deal has already issued an executive order relaxing some restrictions on driving hours for truck drivers in order to help keep the supply moving.

Q. Should people run out to their neighborhood gas station to top off or fill additional tanks with gas?

Townsend cautioned against that.

"Try to stay to as normal a routine as possible so you don’t put additional strain on a system that’s already strained, because there’s only one pipeline operating at this point,” he recommended.

Colonial Pipeline said Tuesday it's working to get everything back up and running as quickly as possibly. Based on what happened back in September, the company has about a week to get that line back up and running before prices go up and stations start running out of gas.

PHOTOS | Explosion near Alabama gas line

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