Colonial Pipeline Company announced Tuesday that it expects the restart of its Line 1 gasoline pipeline on Wednesday after a leak of approximately 6,000 barrels caused major gasoline shortages and higher prices at the pump in the Southeast.
Crews are constructing a bypass line that, when completed, will resume full operation of Line 1, which runs gasoline from the Gulf of Mexico to the East Coast. The bypass is about 500 to 700 feet long and will have roughly the same pressure and capacity specifications as Line 1.
Gas prices have risen significantly in the past week in the affected states, with Georgia getting hit the worst. The cost of fuel rose by 4.5 cents in Georgia overnight, adding to an increase of fuel prices by 25 cents in just a week, according to AAA.
The gasoline leak occurred September 9 on a section of Line 1 in Shelby County, Alabama. A mining inspector detected a gasoline odor while doing work nearby and reported the smell to authorities. The leak was then confirmed by Colonial Pipeline, and officials are currently investigating the cause of the spill, which remains unknown.