ROBERTA, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) -The cold temperatures are impacting homeowners who rely on gas to stay warm. Many say they are seeing big spikes in their bills. A local, family-owned business is doing its best to help its customers weather through this winter storm.
Ezell Felts relies on the gas in her 250 gallon tank to live day to day.
"I use the gas for my heated water, my heat, my cooking," Felts said.
But flipping a switch to turn on her stove burners to cook dinner is now costing her more money. It is also posing serious problems for this 86-year-old on a fixed income.
"It's been really burning some gas...yes it has," Felts said.
This is an all too familiar situation for the family owned business Roberta Propane, Inc. Brenda Allen tells 41NBC the recent cold snap is causing the phones to ring off the hook as customers scramble to get gas.
"We can only purchase so much propane at a time so that's really going to impact us. We're not taking on any new customers right now," Allen said. "We're just trying to make sure that we keep enough gas to service our customers that we have right now."
With the high demand comes a high cost. Allen says they have raised their prices by 100% since October and now they are limiting how much gas they are selling to customers.
"We're trying to keep our prices as competitive as possible and stay as low as we can," Allen said. "The maximum that we're pumping now is a hundred gallons."
That is enough to heat a home for two to three weeks. The employees are working non-stop throughout the chilly days to make sure their "customers stay warm."
"Our suppliers keep telling us hopefully within the next two weeks we might catch some kind of break," Allen said.
And that is leaving customers like Felts wishing for warmer weather.
"If it keeps going up where I can't pay it I may have to live with my son," Felts said. "Until it warms back up and you can come back home?" 41NBC's Amanda Castro asked. "Yea, it warms up and I can come back home."
Roberta Propane, Inc. has been in business since 1984. It serves more than 2,000 customers across several Middle Georgia counties, including Crawford, Bibb, Monroe, Upson, Lamar, and Taylor.