The Colonial Pipeline is back in business after a cyberattack on May 7 forced the pipeline operator to take it offline.
Colonial Pipeline announced on its website that it was restarting operations on Wednesday, May 12 at 4pm CST. Despite restarting operations, the company said that it will require “several days” to restore its product delivery supply chain to normal.
Since Friday, May 7, the pipeline has had its operations halted as a result of a ransomware attack. In the wake of this attack, Colonial Pipeline has worked with cybersecurity experts and law enforcement to secure its operations.
Segments of the pipeline have been brought back into operation since the initial halt. On Monday, May 10, the company began a step process to restore normal operations, with Line 4 from Greensboro, N.C. to Woodbine, Md., operating under manual control.
Colonial Pipeline continued to deliver product during the shutdown, delivering 967,000 barrels, or 41 million gallons, to various markets as of Tuesday, May 11. In preparation for its restart, Colonial Pipeline has taken delivery of 2 million barrels from refineries.
This pipeline stretches more than 5,500 miles from Houston, Texas to Linden, New Jersey. The pipeline services markets across throughout the southern and eastern United States.
Gov. Asa Hutchinson appeared on Fox Business’ show Cavuto: Coast to Coast, calling for increased cybersecurity for the energy sector. He said that the attack and shutdown illustrated the need for multiple energy sources and both governmental and private sector investment in security.
“Obviously, that’s the governmental side, but the private sector has to do it as well. And it’s shocking to most Americans that one pipeline can have such an impact on the East Coast whenever that is shut down. We’ve got to have better resources, better pipelines and more effective transit routes to get this to the population centers,” he said.
In an interview with KARK, State Economic Forecaster Michael Pakko recommended that individuals be mindful of their gas consumption in the wake of this pipeline shutdown, but he expected a return to stable gas prices in Arkansas.
Image courtesy of Colonial Pipeline