Water contaminating some Southwest Florida gas tanks

Reporter: Ashley French

With the record amount of rain we received, some people in Southwest Florida have struggled with an issue that isn’t visible to the eye, like street flooding.

Rainwater seeped into the ground and, in some places, inside gas station gas tanks located underground.

Jessica and Scott Shwedel filled up at a North Naples Chevron gas station on Thursday, June 13. They got more than they asked for in their gas tank, and now their car is in the shop.

“They called us back and asked us if we had filled up our gas tank the night before,” said Scott Shwedal. “I told them yes, and after they did their testing, they told us our tank was 90 percent full of water.”

The Shwedels have a second car to get around, but they must pay $1,500 for repairs on their 2019 Buick Enclave after filling it up at the gas station.

“All I did was fill up my tank with gas, and something was wrong with it when it wouldn’t start, and all the warning lights were coming on the next day,” said Scott.

The Shwedels returned to the gas station on Friday, June 14, to talk to one of the employees.

Scott said the employee told him they were not the only ones experiencing this issue. He received the manager’s information and reached out.

The gas station manager said through a text message, “I’ve forwarded your information to our gas company for them to do a further investigation.”

The Shwedals want the gas station to take some responsibility.

“I would think that maybe they have insurance or something that could cover all of the damages on our end, so that’s what I would be looking for,” Scott said.

The Shwedals did report this to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

They said the department contacted them to inform them that they took a gas sample and would send it to the lab for further testing.

WINK News did see several pumps with out-of-order bags on them. The pumps without an out-of-order bag on them seemed to be working properly for drivers filling up at the pump.

WINK News reporter Ashley French went inside the gas station to ask the attendant why some of the pumps were out of order.

They said they could not provide her with an answer. French also reached out to the station manager and has not heard back from them at this time.

Stay tuned to WINKNews.com, WINK News App, streaming, and on-air for any new developments on this story. 

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