DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) – Pipeco petroleum company says they responded to the Shell station on River Drive in Davenport Wednesday morning after the gas coming out of the pumps was highly diluted with water.
The watered-down gasoline caused problems for drivers.
“I got fifty dollars and ten cents worth of gas and I started driving back over the bridge and my car was kind of thumping and kinda bumpy, and then it just died. At first, I thought there was something wrong with my car and then I seen three other cars that had the exact same problem and everybody had just gotten gas from Shell,” said Brittany Stevenson, who filled up at Shell around 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday.
Stevenson says she called the Shell station multiple times and was told she would have to wait two to three hours before the manager could come to the store.
Rickie Schloemer says she filled up at the Shell station Wednesday morning too.
“My car was fine. No lights on the dash and now its acting like its out of gas and I just put gas in it and it shows me I have gas in it,” said Schloemer.
Pipeco told TV6 it was a case of phase separation; when an excessive amount of water is in the fuel tank causing water and ethanol to mix and sink to the bottom of the tank.
“They poured some gas into a water bottle and it came out almost watery or like a fresh lemonade color,” said Schloemer.
Schloemer said she is still waiting for answers.
“They never explained anything on how it happened, why it happened, or anything like that,” Schloemer said.
Stevenson said the gas station manager later contacted her and took care of the cost of a rental car, gas, and car repair. Stevenson said she is thankful for how the manager handled the incident. As of Thursday morning, the Shell manager said the problem had been fixed and it is safe to get gas at the gas station. Schloemer said the store manager had offered to pay for some expenses caused by the incident.
A Shell spokesperson responded to inquiries late Thursday evening stating, “Shell Oil Products US takes product quality very seriously. On Wednesday, March 23, it was discovered that gasoline product sold at the Shell-branded outlet at 1026 W River Drive in Davenport, Iowa, may have been contaminated.
Customers who purchased gasoline at the Shell-branded outlet at 1026 W. River Drive and believe they are experiencing vehicle issues related to their purchase are encouraged to call 563-323-6816.
The Shell retail fuels business in the U.S. primarily supplies quality motor fuels to independent wholesalers and licensees who operate under the Shell brand and sell Shell-branded fuels. So while the name on the sign reflects the brand of the motor fuel being sold on the premises, the day-to-day site operations are the legal responsibility of the wholesaler, site owner and/or operator.”
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