Rush to pumps continues into Labor Day weekend

Manager controls crowd at gas station

SAN ANTONIO – The rush to the pumps was seen into Saturday as many continue to fill up their tanks and containers.

Mayor Ron Nirenberg called for calm as people ran the pumps dry for yet another day.

The manager of one gas station said he was forced to stay outside to keep the sizeable crowds under control.

“We’re on crowd control. People need the gas, and it’s crazy here,” said Riz Sunesara, a gas station manager. “I seen one guy cut another guy off because he was running out of gas. I seen another guy hit another guy, talking about, ‘You want gas? I’ll give you some of the gas I got.’ And poured it inside of his car.”

Logistical issues prevented drivers from getting gas to some stations in a timely manner. The Shell on Culebra Road and Esmeralda received 8,000 gallons Saturday morning, but the fuel was gone six hours later.

“It’s very frustrating. You think there's gas because there's a lot of people and everywhere is out,” said driver Terri Lennon.

Nirenberg said overconsumption is contributing to the problem. He took to Facebook to ask San Antonians to be compassionate and not purchase more gas than is needed when they do find a station with fuel.

“I think everybody freaked at one time, not knowing the exact situation that's going on. Now it seems like it is actually causing a gas shortage,” driver Daniel Salazar said.

Until the local fuel supply returns back to normal, people seemed most concerned with being able to fill up at the pump in peace.

“We're going to be OK. Everybody is going to be fine. My granddaughter is worried. We'll be fine,” driver Yolanda Mendoza said.

The manager of the gas station said there were no altercations Saturday, but employees will be controlling the crowd next time the store receives a shipment. He said the store ordered more gas, but it could be two or three more days before it’s delivered. 

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