Concerned about supplying his customers with the propane they need in order to stay warm in this bitter cold snap, Jerry Dauparas of Ashland Propane, feels caught in the middle.
"I've been doing this for, it's the family business," he says. "They trust us to take care of them. Sure, I'm getting 'em gas, but how are they going to afford to pay for this?"
His company is struggling to get enough supply to meet his daily demands, but as prices continue to go up, he knows many of his customers can't afford it, CNN's George Howell reports.
Weather is only part of the reason for the shortage. Last year's corn crop is partly to blame. The robust fall meant producers needed more propane to fuel heaters to dry the crop.
As a result, prices have all but doubled.
More than two dozen states have issued emergency declarations to ease restrictions on propane drivers to get more out of it on the road this winter.
Industry leaders are looking for more solutions, but with winter in full effect, Dauparas knows the dynamics of supply and demand don't make that much of a difference when the people he knows are just trying to keep their homes warm.