Cars were stalling and sputtering after filling up at Carson City's Eagle Station on Saturday morning. The main tank for the station's regular gas pump had been filled at 1:38 a.m., apparently with the contaminated gas now gumming fuel filters all over town.
Retired Carson City resident Scott Malloy stood by his Hyundai where it stalled, just yards from the station. He said cars lined the street earlier, but most were gone by 1 p.m.
"I bought gas here and this is how far I got, along with about 10 to 15 others," he said.
Carson City resident and accounting supervisor Rosy Drabic said she got a little farther. Her Neon made it to Carson Street and College Parkway before it died in the intersection.
"I come here all the time because it's so easy," she said angrily. "But I won't come here again."
Station owners said the problem began with a 4,800-gallon delivery of regular gas received at 1:38 a.m. Saturday morning from River City Petroleum, a company operating out of Sacramento.
"We are so sorry about all of this," said Station spokesperson Nina Siddiq. "We've been here 11 years and this is the first time this has ever happened. We really feel for those people. We love this town and the people and we've always been good to them."
By Saturday afternoon employees of River City Petroleum were draining and cleaning the tanks. Samples of the tainted fuel, purchased from a fuel depot in Redwood City, Ca., were sent to their lab for analysis. River City Petroleum will be liable for damages, according to Eagle Station owner Mohammad Ahmad.