Longview convenience stores have been struggling with a fuel shortage amid the winter weather, but delivery trucks are anticipated to replenish the supply soon.
Krupal Patel, owner of Scotties and Scotties 2.0, said Friday he anticipates receiving more fuel this weekend, hopefully on Saturday, at his gas stations.
Patel said Scotties, at McCann Road and Hawkins Parkway, ran out of gas late Saturday night or early Sunday morning. Scotties 2.0, at Hawkins Parkway and Tryon Road, ran out of fuel Monday, he said. Those stores were among many more in Longview and across East Texas that ran out of fuel as the storm raged on.
“We were not able to get any more gas because the weather was starting to get bad,” he said. “So both stores were out of gas and we couldn’t get any more either because the trucks could not run because of the weather and the road conditions or because their fuel was gelling.”
On Wednesday, Patel found out that many refineries had shut down because of the cold weather causing equipment not to work. Most refineries in Texas have equipment that is not winterized for sub-freezing temperatures, he said.
In communicating with his delivery team, Patel said he had first anticipated to receive fuel today; however, because trucks have been unable to run for nearly a week, they are now behind schedule. Patel’s delivery was bumped back to the weekend, with it expected to arrive Saturday.
Patel said many people visited his stores – which opened with limited hours some days this week – to buy firewood, propane, bottled water, snacks, beverages and other items.
His stores sold out of propane early on, and the delivery truck for convenience store goods wasn’t able to travel this week, as well. Patel said that delivery schedule will resume next week.
When supply is replenished at gas stations, convenience stores and grocery stores, Patel urged people to remain calm and buy enough to get by so that everyone can purchase items.
“As soon as the road conditions improve, we expect to be back to normal in 48-72 hours,” he said.