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Fuel For Evacuees Flows Through Port Tampa Bay

Supplying gasoline to evacuating Floridians is a top priority according to the governor. 

That has meant an accelerated tempo at Port Tampa Bay, which provides the gas, aviation fuel, diesel and oil to Central Florida and the Tampa Bay region.

During a news conference, Gov. Rick Scott urged all gas stations in the state to stay open as long as possible to accommodate people who are trying to evacuate ahead of Hurricane Irma.

On Wednesday, five vessels off-loaded petroleum products - almost twice the number of the typical two to three tankers that deliver daily to Port Tampa Bay, according to port spokeswoman Samara Sodos.

Credit Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF Public Media
WUSF Public Media
Taken at the East Fowler Ave. Shell station that was entirely out of gasoline Wednesday morning.

Sodos said that three tankers were unloading fuel Thursday, which will be distributed to the Tampa region and Central Florida.

“FHP (Florida Highway Patrol) is escorting a convoy of tankers to deliver gas statewide,” Sodos said in an email. “We are getting more petroleum than normal in advance of the storm.”

There's a new, free app, "GasBuddy," that as we previously reported, can help Floridians track the availability of fuel supplies at nearby gas stations.

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