Colonial Pipeline said it had no estimate on when it could restart the 5,500-mile pipeline which was shut down on Friday, 7 May 2021, after a cyberattack. This has boosted fuel prices in the jittery financial markets to their highest level in three years.
Most of the Colonial Pipeline, which supplies nearly half of the East Coast’s transportation fuel from the hub of refineries near Houston, remains offline for now, the company said in a statement, though it has restarted some smaller lines which run off the main arteries.
Any sustained outage could threaten to push up retail gasoline and diesel prices at the pump just as the summer high-demand driving season starts. Prices for wholesale gasoline in the financial futures market jumped as much as 4 percent in Sunday evening trading to their highest level since 2018, hitting nearly $2.22 per gallon.
Colonial also confirmed the hackers used ransomware to shut down its internal computer business networks, which prompted the company to shut down the systems controlling the pipeline as a precaution. Colonial has brought in third-party cybersecurity firms and is trying to restore its IT system, the Georgia-based company stated.
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