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State

Weather sparks propane shortage in Illinois


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CHICAGO — Cold winter weather along with a wet fall is putting a pinch on propane distribution in Illinois.

The Springfield bureau of Lee Enterprises Newspapers reports propane distributors have traveled as far as Mississippi and Kansas to keep up with demand.

Farmers used more propane to dry crops last fall. And one director of an Illinois propane trade group says he's "going to be scared to death" if cold weather continues the next two weeks.

Nationwide, the blast of winter weather is sapping fuel supplies. Propane users are hit hardest by the fuel shortages, some paying up to $100 to $200 more per fill up.

The U.S. Energy Department said last week supplies of propane fell to the lowest level on record for the second week of January.

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