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September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attack/Gasoline price gouging

Immediately following the September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attack, rumors of skyrocketing gasoline prices led to a consumer panic in the United States; in the evening, long lines appeared at gas pumps in many areas of the country. Some gas stations ran out of fuel by the next morning. Authorities quickly stepped in to enforce price gouging[?] laws and gasoline quickly returned to prices in line with the price of crude oil which rose slightly after the attack.

In Iowa, prices were rumored to reach $4.65 in the Quad Cities area, up from a typical range of $1.60 to $1.80 per gallon the previous weekend. The governor and attorney general issued statements to the effect they would investigate and prosecute instances of unreasonable price increases, and urged consumers to be calm. Penalty applied for gouging was $1000 USD fine if price exceeded $2.00 per gallon.

In Michigan some isolated gas stations briefly hit over $5.00 a gallon however the state attorney general vowed to prosecute for price gouging anyone charging over $2.00 a gallon. Some gas stations sold out of gas on the first night after the attack.

In Illinois, state attorney general Jim Ryan filed suit against convenience store chain Casey's Inc., for price gouging. The company faces a maximum penalty of $50,000 per offense if found guilty. Casey's subsequently offered refunds to customers.

In Minnesota, state officials declared there was no price gouging because people were willing to sit in hour long gas lines for 3 gallons of $5.00 gas. Some people were even filling up 30gal barrels with gas because of what people viewed as a possible shortage.

Cases were reported in Indiana, Virginia, Kansas and Missouri also.

At least in Missouri it caused a run on gas for a few hours due to local radio who reported the few isolated cases (giving them the name "shock jocks"). Which came first, the reports of price gouging or the price gouging?

September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attack - Full Timeline
In Memoriam - Casualties - Missing Persons - Survivors - Personal experiences
Donations - Assistance - Closings and Cancellations - Memorials and Services
US Governmental Response - Responsibility - Hijackers - Political effects - Economic effects

See also: "War on Terrorism" -- U.S. invasion of Afghanistan -- 2001 anthrax attack -- World Trade Center -- The Pentagon -- New York City -- Washington, D.C. -- AA Flight 11 -- UA Flight 75 -- AA Flight 77 -- UA Flight 93 -- U.S. Department of Defense -- terrorism -- domestic terrorism -- Osama bin Laden -- Taliban -- Islamism -- Afghanistan -- collective trauma -- September 11

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