Consumer Alert or Plea for Votes - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Consumer Alert or Plea for Votes

Democratic candidate for agriculture commissioner Hank Gilbert Democratic candidate for agriculture commissioner Hank Gilbert

AMARILLO, TEXAS - It's being called everything from a rip-off to just plain unfair - and one statewide political candidate wants to make sure you know what's going on before filling up your gas tank again. But some local experts say that's an overreaction.

Democratic candidate for agriculture commissioner Hank Gilbert says the inspections that are supposed to regulate gas pump meters are being vastly under-performed. That could mean that consumers aren't getting everything they are paying for at the pump.

"Some people are driving miles out of their way to go to a gas station for three or four cents cheaper gas, yet we can't guarantee that those gas pumps are working correctly. we've got to do better than that folks," he said.

In Amarillo he says he's found at least 13 stations with out of date inspection stickers - news many local drivers didn't like hearing. Some even drove off from the out of date tanks to buy gas elsewhere after they found out.

The vice president of one of the area's largest gas chains says local businesses don't have control over the inspections - when and where they take place is determined by the Texas government, and he adds that sometimes unchecked pumps give too much gas.

That would mean the business would loose money by undercharging, so most chains do their own annual inspection of meters anyway instead of waiting for the government to do it every four years.

Again there's no proof that just because a pump's inspection is out of date you'll lose money, but if the possibility is something that bothers you, there's a really easy tip to learn.

Before you fill up, check for this little sticker next to the nossel. It has a hole punched over the last time the pump was inspected. As long as that isn't older than 2007, you should be just fine.

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