COBURG, Ore. (KMTR) – Squeezing the gas pump dry without draining wallets, a Coburg gas station unloaded its entire fuel supply Wednesday while saving drivers thousands in cash.
The Coburg Shell station off the Interstate 5 exit set up a gasoline “fire sale” Thursday, May 3rd, 2012, letting drivers fuel up for $1.50 per gallon. The opportunity allowed most drivers to fill their tanks for around 20 dollars.
The sale brought a crush of traffic with it too. The station opened at 8 a.m. and within about an hour, the line stretched for at least one-quarter of a mile down the road.
The reason for the sale is Interstate 5 itself.
Soon, ODOT will begin reconstructing one of its freeway ramps near the gas station. Wednesday ended up being the last day the station could pump gas.
Fuel managers had to get the gas out of the ground somehow and decided that a mega-sale was the best way to do it. The sale saved hundreds of customers thousands of dollars collectively.
“If I'm down close to empty, it will run me 80 bucks,” said Dan Strunk of Coburg, who was filling up his truck on Wednesday. As for the cost to Strunk? “18 dollars and 25 cents, but it only took a little over 10 gallons.”
(At normal prices) “It would cost me 65 dollars to fill my pick up,” said Jan Hopper of Redmond, who filled her truck on Wednesday. “Cost me $22.”
(It costs me) “Between 50 and 60 I think,” says Logan Barnes of Harrisburg, who filled his truck on Wednesday. “Only $20, a little under half what it usually cost.”
“Yeah they're pretty happy, I mean they're used to filling up their car for 50 dollars, 75 dollars and today they're doing it for 10 and 15 and 20,” said Steve Warner, Fuel Manager at the Shell station.
“You know they're getting in touch with their past when they remember, you know, 'I remember when gas was this price and that was kind of nice,” said Warner.
“Today's economy you know, without a job or anything, it really helps the budget,” said Hopper.
Some waited in line for about 30 to 45 minutes on Wednesday, but not everyone made it through.
The station sold out of all gasoline blends at around 11:20 a.m. on Wednesday, about three hours after it opened.
According to the U.S. EnergyInformation Administration, the last time gasoline averaged $1.50 agallon in the U.S. was in December 2003.
Soon enough, the Shell station involved in Wednesday's mega-sale will be torn down. Managers are still in the process of figuring out if they'll rebuild it, but if they do, the station would likely be back up in September 2012 and likely with similar gas prices to all other stations nearby.