Truck driver shortage affecting six states
Shared from the 6/25/2021 Houston Chronicle eEdition
Gasoline is running short in six U.S. states because there aren’t enough tanker truck drivers to deliver the fuel just as summer demand is rising, according to an OPIS by IHS Markit report.
Fuel-hauling companies that reduced staff during the pandemic are struggling to hire back drivers who found jobs elsewhere, leaving Florida, Iowa, Ohio, Washington, Oregon and Colorado with cases of bagged pumps and outages of regular and premium gasoline in some filling stations, OPIS said Thursday.
The supply woes are happening as demand for gasoline has risen to pre-pandemic levels, with the U.S. reopening after months of lockdowns. Consumption could rise above 9.7 million barrels a day in July or August, according to the report.
For now, the supply constraints have been a cause only of inconvenience for some drivers and have not yet reached the level of a crisis, OPIS said.
But the driver shortage will likely affect fuel deliveries for another 12 months, OPIS said.