Hurricane Irene raises local gas prices and grounds flights


by Gene Kang

Posted on August 26, 2011 at 6:40 PM

Updated Friday, Aug 26 at 6:41 PM

(WHAS11)- Hurricane Irene may not be affecting Kentuckiana directly but crews are planning to lend a helping hand to the east.

Irene’s center is still about 300 miles from Camp Hatteras, North Carolina and is expected to hit tomorrow.

Commuter transit systems in New York, New Jersey and Philadelphia will be shut down and 270,000 people are being evacuated from parts of New York City.

Here at home, the Red Cross has crews that already left to aid in the aftermath of the storm, but other effects are being felt in the area as well.

Friday, gas prices are jumping and planes are being diverted for safety.
Locally, military planes, eight USMC Ospreys from Jacksonville, North Carolina are being housed at Louisville International Airport.

"It's just a nightmare, it's just a nightmare. I realize this is effecting a lot of people and not just us," said Margaret Gaines, who along with her husband, are also grounded in Louisville.

The Gaines’ canceled their flights and weeklong vacation to Virginia Beach because of Irene. After 48 hours with customer service and they finally got their $1,400 back.
The Gaines family says their worries pale in comparison to the impending destruction from Hurricane Irene.

Financially, the severe weather is causing a domino effect on skyrocketing national and local gas prices. As oil refineries shut down, gas prices went up nearly $.30.