As states along the Southeast feel the impact of the Colonial Pipeline shutdown due to a cyberattack on Friday, a shortage in fuel is plaguing the region.

States such as Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and Maryland are being adversely affected after the Colonial Pipeline was the victim of a DarkSide ransomware attack that compromised its networks, the FBI confirmed on Monday.

As a result of the cyberattack, the Colonial Pipeline shut down a main line running from Texas to the New York Harbor but has said that it expects to be fully operational by the end of the week. The company’s website was still down as of Wednesday morning.

Some lateral lines have reopened, but getting fuel supplies to the East Coast has proved a challenge, creating a backlog of 15 to 18 days due to the disruption, according to auto organization AAA.

The Colonial Pipeline delivers 45% of the gasoline supply to the Southeast, but it has been noted that there is plenty of fuel for the region. The pipeline disruption is only delaying delivery to the area, and panic buying is causing outages.

Officials have advised consumers not to hoard fuel but have warned of a price spike that could reach as high as $3 a gallon for gasoline in the near term, according to AAA.

Travel and navigation app GasBuddy said on Sunday that “It is true that if the pipeline remains out of service into the early part of next week, roughly Tuesday or so, that some gas stations may run low on gasoline.”

But it also warned, “Tank farms that take the gasoline from the pipeline are likely starting to see supply run low, so it is vital that motorists do not overwhelm the system by filling their tanks.”

Affected states have already started to feel the impact of the pipeline shutdown with long lines at the gas pump. GasBuddy said once the pipeline does resume operation, it will take days for the “normal conditions to occur,” but maintained that problems could stretch for several weeks if consumers hoard gasoline.

To help residents of the impacted states, GasBuddy has launched a Fuel Availability Tracker that can help identify if a gas station has fuel available. It also encourages motorists to report the status of fuel stations to help consumers find gasoline or avoid stations with no fuel.

The Fuel Availability Tracker can be accessed on the GasBuddy website or by downloading the GasBuddy app in the Apple App or Google Play Stores.

GasBuddy has made the Fuel Availability Tracker available for use in the states of Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, South Carolina, North Carolina, Florida, Virginia, and Maryland.

Beyond fuel availability, the tracker also shows gasoline prices and whether or not the station has gasoline, diesel, or power. It also offers search features and is free for use.

Venezuela Gasoline Pump A man pumps gasoline at a service station. California cleantech company Siluria Technologies says its process can make cheap gasoline from natural gas. Photo: Reuters/Jorge Silva