Huntsville transit has reserve accessible if gas shortage becomes issue


HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — The Colonial Pipeline is finally operational again after being shut down for several days.

The pipeline was shutdown after a cyberattack late last week. With the uncertainty before the restart of the pipeline, pressure at the pumps continued to build. The fear of a lack of gas led to panic buying, and some gas stations running out of fuel.

The message to those panic buying was to stay calm, and that echoed with Huntsville’s transit system.

The city transports about 2,000 people per-day on their Orbit fixed-route buses. They transport another 400 to 500 passengers on their para-transit service.

Because they are responsible for making sure so many people get where they need to be every day, one transit official said they’re watching the situation here at home very closely, but right now, they have enough fuel.

Transit officials are hopeful the regional issues will resolve themselves by the end of the week, but if they don’t, the transit system has a back up plan.

“The city of Huntsville does have reserves set aside just for emergencies, whether it be hurricanes, tornadoes, power outages. We’ve never had to dip into those reserves in the 5 years I’ve been here but they are available,” Public Transit Manager John Autry said.

Autry even suggests to those getting close to running out of gas who are concerned they may not be able to refuel soon, consider taking the bus to work or to get your errands run.

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