Among the troubles some local gas stations faced in the recent rash of water contamination, one affected Gary fuel stop has been able to stay open selling certain fuels.
At Love's Travel Stop, 3150 Grant St. in Gary, the store and all gas pumps are open; however there are two types of fuel currently unavailable. The Denny's inside of the travel stop is also operating as usual.
Chad Previch, external communications manager for Love's, said the gas pumps cannot dispense 89 and 91 octane until the water intrusion is resolved. He said 87 octane is available without issues.
"Love’s remains open to offer our valued Gary customers all the quality products they’ve come to expect from us: fuel, coffee, snacks, drinks, clean places, friendly faces and anything else they need to get back on the road and to their busy lives," Previch said. "Our local employees take pride serving the community. They look forward to seeing their customers, friends and family in the store while the area recovers from recent flooding."
The rainy weather that caused issues on local roads also hit Northwest Indiana gas pumps. With the rain and snow saturating the ground, water seeped into some gas lines in the past few weeks, according to Mariel Chambers, inspector for the Lake County Weights and Measures Department.
Beginning April 27, contaminated gas reports started rolling into the county inspector. A total of six gas stations in three communities tested positive for water in the gas.
Two were in Hobart, two were in Munster and two were in Gary, Chambers said.
Chambers said the water contamination wasn't the fault of the individual gas stations or gas distributors.
The gas pumps at the Munster Marathon at 9451 Calumet Ave. in Munster and the Love's Travel Stop are both affected for the next six weeks, Chambers said Friday.
The convenience stores at both locations are still open. The two gas stations will have to do some repairs on their underground equipment before they will be able to sell all types of fuel previously offered.
Consumers who suspected they filled up on bad gas called the Lake County Weights and Measures Department, which then sent inspectors to take samples of the fuel at potentially contaminated gas stations.
State inspectors also performed secondary tests. Chambers said in some instances, there was as much as 7 to 8 inches of water in the gas samples. Once contamination is found, the gas station must shut down and empty all gas lines, Chambers said. An entirely new shipment of gas is then brought in and inspected before the gas station can reopen.
Chambers said anyone in Lake County who suspects contaminated gas is causing car problems should call her department at 219-755-3680. If the inspected station is found to have contaminated gas, the department will give the report to the consumer, and the consumer will have to contact the gas station for compensation or pursue legal action, Chambers said.
In a previous article, The Times incorrectly reported that Love's Travel Stop's pumps all were closed. The Times regrets the error.