Company restarts gas pipeline after leak in Shelby County

Work crews are trying to repair a pipeline that has spilled more than 250,000 gallons of gasoline in a rural area near Birmingham. Colonial Pipeline says most of the gas is contained in a retention pond near the city of Helena, and there's no public safety concern. (Photo: Colonial Pipeline, via ABC3340.com)

Work crews are trying to repair a pipeline that has spilled more than 250,000 gallons of gasoline in a rural area near Birmingham. Colonial Pipeline says most of the gas is contained in a retention pond near the city of Helena, and there's no public safety concern. (Photo: Colonial Pipeline, via ABC3340.com)

HELENA, Ala. (AP) – Colonial Pipeline has restarted the gasoline pipeline in Alabama that was shut down after a major leak, which caused shortages and surging fuel prices across the South.

Company officials say in a statement that the pipeline reopened Wednesday evening. The pipeline leak was discovered Sept. 9 near Helena, Alabama, when state workers noticed a strong gasoline odor and sheen on a man-made retention pond.

The company has estimated that 252,000 to 336,000 gallons of gasoline leaked from the line. The shutdown of the pipeline led to dry pumps at gas stations in Georgia, Tennessee and the Carolinas.

The company says it will take several days for fuel supplies to return to normal in markets served by the pipeline. More than 800 personnel were on site in the restart efforts.