More than half of South Florida’s gas stations are without fuel ahead of possible landfall by Hurricane Dorian, according to Gasbuddy, a group that monitors fuel shortages.
As POLITICO reported Friday, Gov. Ron DeSantis says the Florida Highway Patrol has been directed escort fuel trucks to make sure gas stations are being resupplied as efficiently as possible.
“We have a lot of fuel in Florida,” DeSantis said, according to POLITICO. “We just have limited capacity to bring it from the ports to gas stations because you can only have so many trucks at one time doing that.”
According to Gasbuddy’s numbers at the time of posting, nearly 56 percent of gas stations in the West Palm Beach-Fort Pierce area were without fuel. For the Miami-Fort Lauderdale region, that number was more than 57 percent.
The Fort Myers-Naples and Gainesville areas also both saw more than 50 percent of stations without gas. But those numbers weren’t as high as the shortages in South Florida.
No other region tracked by GasBuddy, which worked with state officials during Hurricane Irma, saw more than 37 percent of stations without fuel.
The state of emergency gives the Governor and other state officials more latitude in coordinating efforts to aid with storm preparation and recovery.
The rush to refuel comes as Dorian moves closer to the Sunshine State. The latest projections have it hitting the coast east on Lake Okeechobee before turning sharply upward and moving north through the rest of Florida.
That’s prompted people from a wide swath of Florida to stock up on fuel and supplies in the event of a catastrophic storm.
Dorian could be a Category 4 by the time it reaches Florida’s east coast. While it would likely weaken quickly by sitting over land, it would still be more than strong enough to create dangerous flooding conditions should it move on its projected path.
There is still significant uncertainty in the projections, however. But Florida could begin feeling the effects of the storm as early as Sunday, with a direct hit taking place Monday night.