Forgive us if we’re a wee bit cynical about recent gas shortages in the 100 Mile House area that had residents rushing to the nearest gas outlet to store up on regular gasoline, which when it ran out, “might not be available for five to six weeks.”
At least that was the warning appearing on social media sites and places where people gossip about what they had “just heard.”
Certainly when folks first heard the “news” about the some rural gas outlets running out of regular gasoline, people living in the more rural communities of the South Cariboo would be concerned about being able to get back and forth to work and to the service centres.
However, the initial shock and fear that it could actually be true would wear off quickly when residents dropped into their favourite gas station to “top up just in case,” and were told gas supplies were OK and fuel deliveries were expected to continue as normal.
However, there were a few stations that actually ran out of gas and had to wait until the following morning to have their holding tanks replenished.
At least the “sky-is-falling paranoia subsided when we realized the gas outage was blown out of proportion.
So how did all of the misinformation get started?
Apparently, it hit the media when Petro-Canada announced in a June 3 press release that there was a temporary fuel shortage at its gas outlets in Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and the British Columbia Interior.
The reasons for the shortage, which resulted in empty fuel tanks at outlets in Lac la Hache, Lone Butte and 70 Mile House, was the Fort McMurray fires and an unplanned outage at Petro-Canada’s Edmonton refinery.
So, why the cynicism you ask?
Well, how is it the price of a litre of regular gasoline jumped by 15 cents a litre just a couple of days before the announced shortage.
Is it coincidence, or is it gouging?
When you think about the price of a litre of regular gasoline has risen by 25 cents a litre in past two months in the 100 Mile House area – with 10-cent jump earlier and a 15-cent increase last week.
Was it tied to a pending shortage (supply and demand) or was it tied to the beginning of the tourist season and the opening of cottages and seasonal homes?
Why is it a litre of regular gas $1.28.9 in 100 Mile House and area, when it’s only $1.19.9 in Williams Lake, $1.13.9-$1.19.9 in Kamloops, $1.19 in Cache Creek and $1.13.9-$1.17.9 in Prince George?
We should be outraged.
Folks are encouraged to write letters to the editor, so Big Business and Big Government can feel our outrage and our pain.
Or we can sit on our hands and hope things get better.
We have to get involved so we can invoke change.