High prices, shortage of gas continue

At least one area gasoline station was charging more than $5 a gallon Sunday, and some stations were dry as Hurricane Ike disrupted pipeline deliveries from the Gulf of Mexico.

At Greg's Gas Plus on Georgia Avenue in North Augusta, the price for regular gasoline Sunday was $5.29 a gallon.

Cynthia Cooper, a clerk at the station, said the usual gas supplier was out of fuel, forcing the company to secure gas from suppliers in Savannah, Ga., and Charleston, S.C.

On Thursday afternoon, the store was selling regular for $3.59 a gallon.

"We're getting so many complaints. Lots of rude customers. I tell them, 'Hey, I have to pay the same prices as you,'" Mrs. Cooper said.

A spokesman for Colonial Pipeline, which supplies a gasoline terminal in North Augusta, told The State newspaper in Columbia that supplies could begin moving Sunday or today. The newspaper said shipments from the Gulf normally take about a week to reach North Augusta.

The Augusta Chronicle was unable to reach anyone associated with the terminal on Sunday to confirm the Columbia newspaper's report.

In Columbia County, a Circle K station at Old Petersburg and Old Evans roads posted a price of $9.99 a gallon. Employees said the station was out of gas and posted the high price as a signal to would-be customers.

Staff Writer Johnny Edwards contributed to this story.

Reach Timothy Cox at (706) 823-3217 or tim.cox@augustachronicle.com.

SUSPECT GOUGING?

Contact local law enforcement or your state's consumer affairs department:

Georgia: (800) 869-1123 or consumer.georgia.gov

South Carolina: (803) 734-4200 or www.scconsumer.gov

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