Harlingen, Texas (KVEO) —Rio Grande Valley residents share their frustrations as power outages and cold temperatures continue to cause overcrowding at gas stations.
HEB’s Linda Tovar tells KVEO to expect gas stations to be back to normal in the coming days. She said that there is enough fuel in storage, it’s just taking time to ship out to Rio Grande Valley stations.
It’s important to note that there is no fuel shortage, only an interruption in the delivery of gasoline to convenience stores.
Some people have had to wait days to get gas, with lines of cars stretching down streets.
Many folks were concerned while waiting in long lines hoping there will still be gas by the time they get to the pump.
Drivers said they waited anywhere from 15 minutes to several hours, and they would wait as long as it takes to fuel up.
One driver said he’s had to get help from family because he couldn’t find fuel at any gas station for a few days.
“It’s kinda crazy,” said Hugo Melendez. “Yesterday, I spent an hour and 30 minutes to fill up. There was no gas by the time I got to the pump. One of my cousins gave me a little bit of gas but I got to fill up again.”
Lines are becoming the norm for gas stations that can provide gasoline. The good news is the lines move fast.
Be prepared to be turned away if the gas station runs out of fuel with so many people fueling up.
Some drivers said they drove to several gas stations only to find the pumps shut down, nearly running out of gas in the process to find it.
The way the Rio Grande Valley is spread out is one of the reasons people go through gasoline so quickly.
Many drivers have long commutes down the expressway.
One woman said she had to figure out when lines were the shortest because lives in Mission, has family in McAllen, and works in Donna. That means a lot of driving. She said she had the best luck going early in the morning with a 20-minute wait.
“The other day I was going to work, so we went to Donna with 70 miles to empty, and I had to go to work, then back to my family,’ said Angela Perez.
“I’m worried because I have a two-year-old at home and I have to go to work and I still have to provide for my family. I’m in healthcare and trying to go to work and take care of my family.”
She suggests cutting down on driving, if you can, in order to stretch the gas tank.
In the meantime, pack your patience and don’t panic buy gasoline, it will only create more problems.
Also, take cash if you can because some of the credit card machines are down due to power outages.
Tovar said staff is working around the clock to get trucks back on the road safely and deliver gasoline to Rio Grande Valley communities.
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