More On: pipeline Russia denies involvement in cyberattack that shut down Colonial Pipeline Pipeline crisis forces airline to add fueling stops on long-haul flights Gas prices approach average not seen since 2014 as hacker crisis slams Southeast Republicans bash Biden over pipeline cyberattack, shutdown

More than 1,000 gas stations across America’s Southeast ran dry Tuesday amid a surge of panic buying spurred by the cyberattack that shut down the critical Colonial Pipeline.

The hardest-hit states included North Carolina, with 8.5 percent of about 5,400 stations out of gas, and Virginia, with 7.7 percent of about 3,900 affected, according to Gas Buddy, which compiles data from about 5 million active app users nationwide.

In Georgia, desperate motorists drained the tanks at more than 20 percent of stations in the metro Atlanta area, Gas Buddy analyst Patrick De Haan tweeted.

“This doesn’t mean 80% DO have gas, it means 80% haven’t been reported to us,” he noted late Tuesday afternoon.

S&P’s Oil Price Information Service put the total at more than 1,000, The Associated Press reported.

“A lot of that is because they’re selling three or four times as much gasoline that they normally sell in a given day, because people do panic,” S&P analyst Tom Kloza told AP.

“It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.”

Tuesday marked the fifth day since the Alpharetta, Ga.-based Colonial Pipeline Co. shut down its 5,500-mile, Texas-to-New Jersey network — which supplies the East Coast with about 45 percent of its gas, diesel and jet fuel — following a ransomware attack Friday.

The US government has blamed hackers in Russia who call themselves “DarkSide.”

Colonial has been working to resume operations and put part of the network back in service manually on Monday, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said during a White House briefing.

The company plans to restart most of its operations by the end of the week, Granholm added, urging people not to panic amid the “supply crunch.”

“Let me emphasize that much as there was no cause for, say, hoarding toilet paper at the beginning of the pandemic, there should be no cause for hoarding gasoline,” she said.

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