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Finding Gas: There’s an App for That!

September 14th, 2017 by Mike Vasilinda

Gasoline remains in short supply as returning residents are consuming supplies. As Mike Vasilinda tells us, the state has partnered with a Boston company, GasBuddy, that helps motorists find fuel.

Fuel is moving into Florida, but the app GasBuddy shows more than half the stations in major cities are lacking gas.

Executives from the app were touring the State Emergency Center this week. GasBuddy was designed to help motorists find the cheapest fuel….but when storms started hitting, Patrick DeHaan, the company’s Senior Petroleum Analyst, quickly realized it’s users could help pinpoint shortages.

 

“This information is all being funneled to various levels of government now, to make sure everyone’s got really good information to make decisions on getting these fuel networks back to normal” DeHaan told us at the EOC.

 

The program lists a station as green if it has gas and power, yellow if fuel is limited, and black if there is no power.

GasBuddy nailed it at this station. It has no gas.

A block away, we also found limited fuel at this Chevron, just as the app said we would.

Where it missed the boat was at this Marathon station. It was listed having limited fuel. We found a dozen people filling up.

PJ Sattar is the owner.

 

”You look like you have a lot of gas here? we asked.

“At the moment, yeah. To survive the day, I would say” says Sattar.

Q:”This says maybe not. It may not be accurate?”

“It’s not accurate because yesterday it said I had no gas and I did have gas” Sattar told us.

 

GasBuddy also got it right at this station which was listed as having fuel. It has all you could buy.

We asked GasBuddy’s Patrick DeHaan what lessons were learned.

“Ah, the lessons for us, you now, obviously to maintain services, we’re going to have to beef up our capability.”

Availability and prices posted come from input from the apps users and they’re  accurate only at the time of the post.

The firm first added gas availability to the app during Hurricane Harvey in Texas. It also allows motorists to report price gouging, which it defines as at least 150 percent of the normal price for gas.

 

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