Midwest Propane Shortages cause Price Increases in Eastern WA - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Midwest Propane Shortages cause Price Increases in Eastern Washington

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People in the Midwest and eastern part of the country are still suffering from the effects of severe cold weather. It has left many people cold and in desperate need of propane to heat their homes, but the effects of that winter storm are trickling over i People in the Midwest and eastern part of the country are still suffering from the effects of severe cold weather. It has left many people cold and in desperate need of propane to heat their homes, but the effects of that winter storm are trickling over i

NBCRightNow.com - People in the Midwest and eastern part of the country are still suffering from the effects of severe cold weather.

It has left many people cold and in desperate need of propane to heat their homes, but the effects of that winter storm are trickling over into our area too.

"Late August early September I paid right at $2.00 a gallon for a 100 gallon tank then the last quote was like 3.60...and I think now it's up almost$4.00 a gallon," Byron Lampson said.

Lampson uses a propane fireplace for extra heat in his home. He's seen prices nearly double this winter.

Experts said it is due to a combination of severe winter weather in the Midwest after a late harvest that took up a lot of the propane supply to dry crops.

It has lead to an increase in propane prices across the country.

The manager at Metro Diesel in Kennewick said they have had to increase the price of propane for their customers but that was in January and he hopes this month to get the prices back to normal.

Baron Glassgow, Pacific Northwest Representative for the National Propane Gas Association.

He said whole sale prices rise whenever there is a shortage anywhere in the country because propane is sold as a commodity.

"The whole sale prices move up in one area of the country they can affect the whole sale prices across the country simply because it's transported from one place to another," he said. 

Another reason for the increase in price is transportation. The only way to get propane West of the Mississippi River is by railroad or trailers trucks aand with the demand being so high in the Midwest lately not very much propane is making it all the way here. 

"Those people are suffering back there so that makes it a shortage up here maybe not the physical product might not be in short supply but they can't get the trucks to move it," Lampson continued. 

Although propane is not widely used in the West as a main source of heat, some people still depend on it Lampson explained he budgeted $300 for propane this winter and he is already past $500.
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