After a cyberattack by Russian ransomware group DarkSide announced Monday, segments of its delivery system are being brought back online in a stepwise way.
Restoring our network to regular operations is a process that requires the diligent remediation of our systems and this takes time, the company said in a statement.
In response to the cyber attack of our system, we temporarily disrupted certain systems to contain the threat. This temporarily affected all pipeline operations and impacted some of our IT systems.To restore the service, we have to work to ensure that each of these systems can be restored safely online from anywhere.
Colonial's restart plan, under the supervision of relevant federal regulations and in close consultation with Department of Energy, will bring service to the Internet through a phased approach.
This plan is based on a number of factors with safety and compliance driving our operational decisions, and the goal of significantly restoring operational service by the end of the week, Colonial noted.
The company added that it continues to evaluate product inventory in storage tanks at its facilities and others along its system and is working with shippers to move the product to terminals for local delivery.
The White House established an interagency working group to help deal with the issue and the Department of Transportation issued a temporary hours of service exemption to offer more flexibility to motor carriers and drivers that are importing gasoline, diesel, jet fuel and other refined petroleum products to help alleviate local supply disruptions.
Colonial Pipeline continues to be the safe and efficient restoration of service to our pipeline system while minimizing disruption to our customers and all those who rely on Colonial Pipeline. Colonial's statement concludedWe appreciate the patience of the traveling public and the support we have received from the federal government and our peers throughout the industry.
Colonial Pipeline operates a 5,500 - mile system that brings fuel from the refineries of the Gulf Coast to the New York metro area.According to the company website, the pipeline is consumed more than 100 million gallons a day or roughly 45% of fuel on the East Coast.It serves gasoline, diesel, jet fuel and heating oil and supplies military facilities in the US.
Colonial's update comes as the American Automobile Association reported that the national average for gas prices increased by 6 cents to $2.96 and is poised to rise further thanks to the disruption of the economy.
This shutdown will have implications on both gasoline supply and prices, but the impact will vary regionally, AAA spokesperson Jeanette McGee said in a statement.As early as this week, areas including Mississippi, Tennessee and the East Coast from Delaware to Georgia are most likely to experience limited fuel availability and price increases.These states could see prices increase this week by 3 to 7 cents.
An increase of 3 dollars would make the average cost of gasoline the most expensive since November 2014, when the price was $2.99 and higher.
AAA estimates that once the Colonial Pipeline system is back and running, there could be residual delays as it takes about 15 to 18 days to transfer fuel from New York to Texas.