Hurricane Irma might inspire change at the pump

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Changes are being considered in Tallahassee to the way the state handles hurricanes. Some are things virtually everyone would notice, like at the pump.

RELATED: Photos from Hurricane Irma

We all remember the painful long lines at gas stations accords the state during Hurricane Irma.

“It seemed really hectic. Everybody was trying to go get as much gas as they needed. Maybe some got more than they needed,” said Wellington man Roman Conde in an interview at the Wawa at Belvedere Road and Australian Avenue in West Palm Beach.

“Oh, it was horrible, man,” said West Palm Beach resident Alian Ruiz.

Wawa had employees directing traffic because it was so busy.

The committee on hurricane preparedness, which was created after Irma, is working on recommendations for laws to alleviate some of the problems we all experienced.

“If there’s any way to improve the whole system, that would be great,” Conde said.

One idea is for the consumer. During a declared state of emergency, and once the lower, cheaper grade gas runs out, the price for premium would drop to the whatever regular costs.

“It’s more octane for the price of 87, that’s a steal right there,” Ruiz said.

To get gas down to South Florida, another idea is to optimize railroads to carry tankers, incentivizing transportation companies to move gas, like with a fuel tax reduction, and a common GPS device in tankers, so they could be tracked in real-time by emergency management.

On Tuesday, a select committee on Hurricane Response and Preparedness passed a list of recommendations suggested to improve hurricane response. It will be presented to state Legislature in hopes of creating and passing legislation. 

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