Here Are Your Worst Gas Station Stories
How about this:
Well before dawn on my day off, I get a call from a fleet driver complaining they can’t get a van to fuel up (Ford Transit) and the credit card was locked. They spent the $100 limit on the card and the tank was still empty. They tried to fuel it again, hit the limit and now the credit card is locked. The driver was now trying to fuel it up using their personal credit card (why? – and yes, I did reimburse the driver as they only got $10/h then and gas was $4.50). In the background at that moment, I hear an attendant start yelling and the emergency shut off was hit. 30 minutes later, I am “both at and not at work” at the scene where a driver pumped about 60+ish gallons of fuel on to ground. The slope was just away from the pump for the driver not to notice as they sat in the van while it pumped onto the ground. In about 20 or so minutes of the gas spill, I had about 10+ months of work ahead of me.
It was appearent in the parking lot that someone cut the fuel filler pipe (rubber) from the filler to the tank in an effort to steal gas. However, my vehicles are stored with empty tanks at the end of the day. Refueling in the morning was critical.
Why was it “terrible” and headache?
1. The driver wasn’t doing their pre-shift safety checks. Gas was obvious spilled around if they bothered to look down. I had to do remedial training for the per-trip inspections and fueling requirements.
2. The driver was in the cab, with the vehicle running while pumping fuel onto the ground. Lucky we did not have a bigger, more explosive issue. Had to do a EHS/OSHA “near miss” training/debrief.
3. I lost a vehicle for about a week out of service as a result (Having one of four vans down in a rotation of 3 on, 1 off is an issue for small special vehicle rotations). But really, it was half-down for nearly a year. Because the “state” requires an estimate process and crime report for a “fix” of a dozen or so dollar part to be “installed”. PITA. And because it was a “gubbermint” fleet:
4. I had a 10+ month fight with the auditing folks because there was $400+ ish dollars of gas to document for because “the state” tracks mileage and fuel use, if they don’t align. Audit. You take your car, swipe, inter card’s vehicle ID number, enter mileage, etc. I had to keep both every paper receipt of every fuel up and even with the police report, had to deal with some part of the system constantly turning off the fuel car because some system flagged “incorrect” mileage. It was a constant fight because every 2-3 days, a driver was locked out from refueling. I would need to ground the vehicle every other day to try and fight for fuel just to know if the vehicle was available the NEXT day (again, our vehicle went to “bed” dry).
4b. Not only that, but because I had a “problem” account, I had an audit of all of my vehicles nearly monthly … for all 20-70 ish vehicles (three different pools). Do you think a motor-pool user walks inside if they don’t get a receipt from the pump? Ha!
Elected officials can scam and cut deals with friend all day, but my the Lord me merciful if that fleet guy has a criminally cut fuel line to a parked vehicle and gas goes on the ground.
My worst gas station experience didn’t even happen while I was at the gas station on my day off – that then cause me to be at a gas station every other day for 10 months. Sigh.