Finally, many people have completed their immunization cycles, and more Americans are feeling better about returning to the world. It’s almost summer, and I don’t know about you, but I’m planning to extend the road trip I drove last July from Austin, TX to Elkhart, Indiana. And I think a hybrid with large numbers of range (like a Lexus LC 500h with 600 miles on one tank) will be a wise choice since industry insiders predict a gas shortage.
Due in part to the pandemic, oil companies are facing a shortage of tanker drivers. The net result is that between 20 and 25 percent of tankers in the fleet are idle, according to the National Tank Truck Carriers (via CNN Company), which means less fuel can be transported to gas stations across the country. Driving schools closed for a while last year and are scrambling to fill the gap, but truck driver jobs overall have been more difficult to fill in recent years.
To operate a fuel tanker, a driver must not only obtain a commercial driver’s license; they must complete weeks of training. The trips are shorter than long-haul truckers have to make, but pulling gas comes with its own challenges. I mean, getting behind the wheel of a giant flammable tank must be incredibly stressful.
If this shortage occurs as the forecast is directed, expect a build-up of gas that could be as frustrating as the toilet paper deficiency the country experienced earlier in the pandemic. Storing gasoline cans at home also requires some precautions: Exxon recommends on its site to store gasoline at room temperature, out of direct sunlight and away from potential heat sources such as a water heater, radiator or furnace. And make sure you keep it at least 15 feet away from your nightlight.
Electric cars and plugins are looking pretty good right now, eh? Don’t be surprised to see many more charging stations appearing very soon.
What are your plans for the summer? Comment here or send a note to the writer: [email protected]