Gas Stations Run Dry as Pipeline Restarts, State Pushes Vax for Kids

Large Number Of Gas Stations Closed

(Asheville, NC) -- Fuel is out at a majority of gas stations in North Carolina. GasBuddy reported Wednesday afternoon that only around 30-percent of gas stations had availability across the state. In the upstate South Carolina-Asheville region, close to 80-percent of businesses were out of fuel. Colonial Pipeline announced its pipeline operations were back up and running late yesterday.

Cooper Urges Not To Hoard Gas Again

(Raleigh, NC) -- Governor Roy Cooper is continuing to urge drivers to only fill up with gas that you need. Tempers may be running high as gas stations run short on supply, like an instance yesterday where two people got into a fight while waiting in line in Knightdale. Cooper said he'll continue to work with federal and local officials to strengthen fuel distribution as things move forward.

State Pushes Vaccines For Younger Kids

(Raleigh, NC) -- The state is encouraging teenagers to get their COVID vaccine. A CDC panel gave its support yesterday after the FDA approved use of the Pfizer vaccines in kids aged 12-to-15-years old. North Carolina Health and Human Services says you can find an appointment at My-Spot-Dot-N-C-Dot-Gov. Pfizer and Moderna are currently testing vaccine effectiveness in children under 12.

Asheville City Council Eyes Property Tax Increases

(Asheville, NC) -- Asheville city leaders are considering a property tax hike in its new budget. The Citizen-Times reports the city council heard a presentation from city staff this week for a three-cent increase to help cover raises and services. Commissioners in Buncombe County are weighing an increase of two-point-one-percent.

Asheville Murder Suspect May Be In Charlotte

(Asheville, NC) -- The search for a murder suspect is moving outside of Asheville. Officers have been looking for Dionate Whitson since a 17-year-old was shot to death near a ball field on Gray Street last November. The Asheville Police Department stated yesterday that investigators believe Whitson is either still in the city, or could be in the Charlotte area. There's a five-thousand-dollar reward for information leading to his arrest.

Two Injured In Chemical Leak

(Henderson County, NC) -- Two people are being treated for injuries suffered in a Henderson County chemical leak. Firefighters were called out to a hazmat emergency at the Linamar plant late Wednesday morning. Crews from the Asheville Fire Department responded to the scene as well. The A-F-D said a 55-gallon drum of nitric acid failed.

Drivers Searching For Gas Around Charlotte

(Charlotte, NC) -- Charlotte drivers are likely to have trouble finding gas today. GasBuddy reported more than 70-percent of gas stations around the Queen City were without gasoline early yesterday. That number was at nearly 75-percent for the state late last night. Colonial Pipeline announced its pipeline operations were back up and running late yesterday. Pfizer and Moderna are currently testing vaccine effectiveness in children under 12.

Charlotte Healthcare Providers Giving Vaccine To New Age Group

(Charlotte, NC) -- Healthcare providers around the Queen City are preparing to give out COVID vaccines to kids 12-and-up. A CDC panel gave its support yesterday after the FDA approved use of the Pfizer vaccines in kids aged 12-to-15-years old. Walk-ins are being welcomed today at Novant Health Medical Group and StarMed locations.

Panthers Open Season Against Jets At Home

(Charlotte, NC) -- The 2021 season will start at home for the Panthers. The NFL released the schedule yesterday, which pits Carolina against the New York Jets at Bank of America Stadium on September 12th. Former Panthers' quarterback Cam Newton and the New England Patriots will visit Charlotte on November 7th. This will be the first season in an expanded 17-game schedule.

CATS Suspend Fares As Gas Supply Dwindles

(Charlotte, NC) -- Free rides are being offered on the Charlotte Area Transit System while the Colonial Pipeline shutdown continues to cause problems. While operations have been restarted, it will take a few days for deliveries to return to normal. CATS announced yesterday it was suspending fares to help people get to work since finding gasoline has become difficult.

CMPD Hiring Nearly 200 Officers

(Charlotte, NC) -- The CMPD needs more officers. WSOC-TV reports the department is looking to fill nearly 200 positions. Pay incentives are being used to try to recruit officers from other cities.

Charlotte Woman Wins Big In NC Lottery

(Charlotte, NC) -- A Mother's Day gift is turning into a nice nest egg for one Charlotte couple. Catherine Trew told North Carolina lottery officials she won one-million-dollars on a Platinum Seven scratch-off ticket that was a Mother's Day gift. Her husband bought the ticket at an EZ Mart on Monroe Road. Trew says they'll use it as retirement money.

Panic Buying Forced More Stations To Run Out Of Gas Wednesday

(Raleigh, NC) -- There were more long lines and panic buying across North Carolina Wednesday, which resulted in an estimated 71-percent of gas stations running out of fuel. That's according to GasBuddy. However, the threat of an actual gas shortage crisis may have been averted, as Colonial Pipeline announced yesterday that it had restarted its operations along the east coast. Colonial did caution that it could be several more days before supplies return to normal.

Numerous Reports Of Price Gouging In North Carolina, Despite State Of Emergency Warning

(Raleigh, NC) -- Panic buying has also impacted the price of gasoline across the state. Late Wednesday, the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded had risen to two-dollars-85 cents, a seven-cent increase over the day before. Also, Attorney General Josh Stein reported that his office has received nearly 400 complaints about price gouging at the pumps. A reminder to businesses that it is a crime in the state of North Carolina to charge inflated prices for goods and services during a state of emergency.

State Senate Passes New Criminal Justice Reform Bill

(Raleigh, NC) -- Members of the North Carolina Senate unanimously voted to pass a new criminal justice reform bill Wednesday. The bill would among other things allow families to review police bodycam videos within five days after an incident that resulted in serious injury or death. Senate Bill 300 would require police departments to create a public data base that shows if an officer's certification has been suspended or revoked. And, new hires would have to undergo psychological screenings. The bill now goes to the House for consideration.

Remains Found In 2016 Identified As Missing North Dakota Woman

(Durham, NC) -- Durham police have announced that the skeletal remains discovered inside a storage unit in 2016 were that of a North Dakota woman who had been missing since 2005. The victim, identified as Melissa Ann Poitra, reportedly had not been in contact with her family in North Dakota for many years. With help from Othram Laboratories in Texas, Durham investigators were able to identify the remains with the use of DNA samples and facial recognition technology. The case continues to be investigated as a homicide.

Fidelity To Expand Its RTP Operations And Create 500-New Jobs

(Durham, NC) -- Fidelity Investments has announced a major expansion at its Research Triangle Park location in Durham. At a news conference Wednesday, the company said the expansion will involve the creation of a new regional hub for its personal-investment division. The Durham expansion is part of a nationwide plan to hire around four-thousand new workers to help meet an increasing demand in online banking. An estimated 500 new positions will be created for the RTP expansion.

Colonial Oil Pipeline Restarted

(Undated) -- The Colonial pipeline is running again after it was shut down last Friday due to a cyberattack. The oil pipeline, which is a primary source of fuel for North Carolina, came back online yesterday afternoon. The shutdown has led to long lines at the pump this week and a spike in prices. The company says it will take several days for the supply chain to return to normal.

Guilford Co. School To Host Vaccine Clinic On Friday

(Winston-Salem, NC) -- Guilford County Schools is set to begin in-school vaccinations for children this Friday, May 14th. The CDC yesterday signed off on a recommendation to let kids between the ages of 12-and-15 get the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine. Novant Health says a handful of children lined up at their Hanes Mall clinic yesterday to get their first shot.

Two Charged With Murder In Lexington

(Lexington, NC) -- Two people are charged with second-degree murder in connection to a drug overdose in Lexington. Police say Jonathan Gordon purchased heroin from Heather Everhart and gave it to the victim, 39-year-old Eva Beckom. The exchange happened last December behind the Walmart on U.S. 64. Beckom died despite attempts from EMS to save her life. In addition to murder, Everhart is facing a number of drug charges, including possession and trafficking.

Winston-Salem Restaurants Struggling To Find Employees

(Winston-Salem, NC) -- Restaurants in the Piedmont Triad are struggling to find employees. Algenon Cash of the Triad Food and Beverage Coalition says every restaurant he knows is struggling right now. He tells "NBC 12" staffing shortages are leading to decreased hours and increased wait times. Cash says owners are even having to work in the kitchen, which means they can't focus on running their business.

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