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A fog of smoke covers the trees near an explosion of a Colonial Pipeline, Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2016, in Helena, Ala. The pipeline explosion occurred on Monday. The blast, which sent flames and thick black smoke soaring over the forest, happened about a mile west of where the pipeline ruptured in September, Gov. Robert Bentley said in a statement. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Gas prices could be on the rise because of a Colonial Pipeline fire


Just one day after a portion of the Colonial Pipeline exploded, killing one person and injuring several others in Shelby County, Alabama, gas futures soared, according to the Wall Street Journal

The fire prompted officials to shut down the main gasoline pipeline, a 5,500-mile system that delivers 2.5 million barrels of fuel each day. 

The pipeline could be down until at least Saturday, a Colonial shipper told Reuters

This is the second time the crucial pipeline has been shut down in two months. In September, part of the pipeline was closed for nearly two weeks because of a spill that dumped 250,000 gallons of gasoline. 

"We were just beginning to recover from the gas price hikes we saw from the pipeline closure in September," AAA spokesman, Garett Townsend, told CNN. "The explosion will at least temporarily put a halt to the pump-price dip we've experienced over the past 30 days."

On Tuesday, Reuters reports, gasoline futures rose 15 percent.

September's leak caused gas shortages in several states along the East Coast, but Patrick DeHaan, a senior petroleum analyst at GasBuddy.com told Reuters that people shouldn't panic.  

"I would urge motorists not to panic and say, let me fill up the tank now. They need to resist the urge to fill their tank because that's going to make it that much more difficult for everyone in the days ahead," DeHaan said. 

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