The past year, shortages of important household items have become a fairly common occurrence. Thanks to COVID-19, everything from toilet paper and cleaning supplies to bubble tea and pet food has become scarce at some point. But according to CNN Business, there's one absolute necessity that may be harder to find in the coming months, and could cost you a pretty penny. Read on to see what's about to run dry, and for more items that are hard to find now, This Beloved Summer Food Is Disappearing From Stores and Restaurants.
Experts warn that a major gas shortage is looming.
If you're planning on hitting the road after a long year of lockdowns and COVID restrictions, you may want to rethink your plans. Experts are warning that there's a major gas shortage looming that could develop as soon as summer hits, especially as loosened travel restrictions from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) bring more drivers back to the road, CNN Business reports.
And for more news updates sent directly to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
A lack of qualified tanker drivers is causing a kink in the gas supply chain.
Unlike the two gasoline shortages that hit the U.S. during the 1970s, experts say a lack of petroleum is not the reason why pumps may soon run dry. Instead, a dire shortage of tanker truck drivers who are needed to deliver gas to stations across the country has hit the industry, with the National Tank Truck Carriers (NTTC) trade group reporting that 20 to 25 percent of all trucks are currently sitting idle with no one to operate them.
"We've been dealing with a driver shortage for a while, but the pandemic took that issue and metastasized it," Ryan Streblow, executive vice president of the NTTC, told CNN Business. "It certainly has grown exponentially." And for other staples that are going quickly, These 4 Beloved Foods Are Disappearing From Grocery Shelves, Experts Warn.
Experts warn that public panic over gas shortages could lead to hoarding at the pumps.
So far, the lack of tanker drivers has led to spot shortages of gas being reported in some states, including Florida, Arizona, and Missouri, NBC News reports. But some experts warn that a spooked public could rush to the pumps to fill their tanks, putting an even greater strain on thin supplies, especially as more of the population is beginning to get behind the wheel again.
"Imagine the hoarding with toilet paper and topping off of gas tanks that we see after hurricanes and you can see what might happen," Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst for the Oil Price Information Service, told CNN Business. "It doesn't take much—crowd behavior can provoke shortages."
Kloza noted that experts predict demand for gas could top 10 million barrels a day for the first time ever at certain points over the summer.
And for another summer necessity that's disappearing, There's a Major Shortage of This Backyard Staple&It Could Ruin Your Summer.
Gas prices will likely go up where it is still available.
While a lack of demand may have driven down gas prices during the pandemic—with some areas posting as low as $1 a gallon—a return to the road has sent gas prices soaring up 60 percent since last year to a national average of $2.89 a gallon, CNN Business reports.
Kloza warned that gas prices would likely continue to rise in the coming months, with the national average approaching $3 a gallon over the summer. He also warned this number could go even higher in the event of an emergency such as a hurricane hitting the Gulf Coast or a major refinery fire that would further disrupt the gas supply chain.
And for more on post-pandemic changes that should be on your radar, This One Thing Is Disappearing From 300 Walmart Stores.