More fuel trucks expected on roads due to AL pipeline explosion - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

More fuel trucks expected on roads due to AL pipeline explosion

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CHATHAM CO., GA (WTOC) -

Fuel may not be a problem in the Lowcountry and Coastal Empire, but a higher number of tanker trucks on the roads might be.

The trucks are coming from as far away as Atlanta to get their fuel following the pipeline explosion in Alabama. Governor Nathan Deal issued an executive order lifting their driving restrictions.

Fewer tanker trucks will be coming through weigh stations for the next several days. That's because the governor's executive order allows them to bypass weigh stations to make sure gas stations have fuel.

They still have to be safe, though.

"We'll be out patrolling for safety violations. We'll be looking for unsafe drivers, erratic drivers, to try and keep the roadways safe,” said Sgt. Bill Blocker with the Department of Public Safety.

Truck drivers normally can drive 11 hours or 700 miles daily. The executive order lifts both for up to 14 days and prevents price gouging.

"As far as safety, I don't think it's going to affect anybody. The drivers know what they're doing. They're going to rest. They're resting as they're waiting to get loaded. They may have a longer day," said truck driver Randy Chambers.

That longer day mainly a result of long lines to fill up their trucks. Many drivers say they're sure safety won't be a problem.

"It kind of helps us to stop having to run through the weigh scales and slowing down. At a point, it helps. Sometimes it may not,” said truck driver James Hubbard.

"They may work a 20-hour day, but I doubt they'll drive any further because there are longer waits to get loaded up,” said Chambers.

Department of Public Safety officers won't make random stops on these tanker trucks during this emergency period. They will still make sure drivers aren't fatigued and stay safe.

"Of course safety is still our number one priority with the state. We want to make sure our roads remain as safe as possible,” said Sgt. Blocker.

Gov. Deal did ask that you not rush to the pump to get gas. That only causes the demand to spike and in turn prices too. We are not expecting a gas shortage here in our area.

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