Gov. Sanford Outlines State Efforts, Renews Call for Conservation
Governor Mark Sanford today called for restrictions on non-essential state travel, as well as continued work to make it easier to get fuel into South Carolina.
Gov. Sanford has issued a directive to each of his Cabinet agencies to curtail non-essential travel for the coming week, and has sent a request via the state Budget and Control Board for non-Cabinet agencies to do the same. The governor's office will be monitoring the fuel situation to determine whether the restrictions on non-essential travel need to stay in place for longer than a week.
In terms of overland fuel transportation, South Carolina was the first state to ask for the suspension of vehicle height and weight restrictions after Hurricane Gustav, and has asked that those stay in place during recovery from Hurricane Ike. South Carolina has also received a waiver for hours of service restrictions on truck drivers, and is in conversations with the Environmental Protection Agency about the possibility of getting a waiver for using off-road diesel fuel for non-agricultural uses.
Above all, Gov. Sanford is again urging citizens to take a common-sense approach to their fuel purchases, as some have argued that panic-buying in some parts of the state is worsening a short-term disruption in fuel availability.
"While we're taking what steps we can at the state level, I can't emphasize enough that the key to getting through this short-term disruption lies in our collective hands as South Carolinians," Gov. Sanford said. "As we said last week, that means common-sense conservation and patience, and it means avoiding the temptation to fill up everything we have. I'd also ask that as we're doing those things that we remember the importance of offering our thoughts and prayers to those in Texas, Louisiana and beyond who have been affected by this devastating storm."
Gov. Sanford is continuing to encourage citizens to report suspected price gouging to local law enforcement, or to call or email the Attorney General's office at 803-734-3970, or firstname.lastname@example.org.