Some drivers in southern Alberta got a nasty surprise this week after filling up their tanks with what they thought was gasoline but actually included diesel fuel — or vice-versa.
Gas Plus in Langdon, Alta., told CBC News on Thursday that its tanks were accidentally filled with the wrong fuel for three days, and anyone using the pumps was getting a mixture of gas and diesel.
"We can now confirm that there was a mix of fuel delivered on Saturday, July 24, 2021, at 9:00 a.m. affecting only the regular and diesel tanks," GP Fuels Inc. said in a statement. "Diesel fuel was delivered into the regular gas tank, and regular gas was delivered into the diesel tank by the delivery company."
The company said it discovered the error on Tuesday.
It says customers buying gas received approximately 80 per cent regular gas and 20 per cent diesel while customers buying diesel received approximately 60 per cent diesel and 40 per cent regular gas.
Filling your tank with the wrong fuel will require having your gas tank and fuel lines drained and flushed. While putting diesel in a gasoline engine can cause problems, putting gasoline in a diesel engine can do much more damage.
Some drivers who experienced problems as result of the fuel mix-up are now trying to get Gas Plus to pay their repair bills.
Benjamin Forhan says he filled up the tank of his truck, which takes gas, at the station on Saturday, and now, it won't work.
He says the gas station's mistake is costing him around $8,500.
"I didn't do anything. The only thing I did is give them business," he said.
Forhan says since finding out about the mistake in a Facebook post, he has been trying to reach someone at GP Fuels to explain what he should do.
"I need to know, like, should I go take my car in and will you compensate me afterwards … or is insurance going to be like, 'Nuh uh, that's not what we said to do.'"
The company told CBC News that each claim would be dealt with in the coming weeks. But Forhan says he is still left without a car for the time being and has to take the train to work. He says he is contemplating legal action.
"If I go through insurance, even though I've done nothing wrong, I'm going to eventually pay more for insurance because of it," he said.
"They need to be more vocal so people know that when their cars and whatever stop working this is the reason why and that [GP Fuels] are responsible because I think people's cars are going to start breaking down left, right and centre."
Langdon is about 20 kilometres east of Calgary.