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Gas Thieves

Old 04-24-2008, 09:48 AM
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Gas Thieves

Gas thieves targeting cars with new tactics

12:42 AM CDT on Thursday, April 24, 2008

By STEVE STOLER / WFAA-TV You can't drive far without seeing startling gas prices. The national average for a gallon of gas this week is $3.50. In the North Texas area, the average is now $3.43.
Experts say $4.00 for a gallon gas is not far away. The rising prices have some drivers thinking of more creative - and illegal - ways to fill their tanks.
Ashley Minyard said she spotted something hanging from the bottom of her Chevy Tahoe that just didn't look right. She found a three-foot piece of metal rebar pushed through her gas tank.
“It looked like someone had taken their time, probably early in the morning or at night when we were sleeping, and went under my car,” she said.
When Minyard showed her mechanic, Johnny Gentry, he said he wasn't surprised. Gentry said he has repaired several cars and trucks with similar damage over the last month.
“Usually, they're in the bottom of the tank," he said. "Sometimes they just get to where they can hit it, knock a hole in it and take what gas they can take and go."
One of the Sachse mechanic's recent repairs included a gas tank on a van hit by thieves at a Garland funeral home.
The culprits drilled a hole in the bottom of the tank and drained all the gasoline out.
With recent design changes, it's becoming difficult to siphon gas from the top, mechanics say. So, culprits are changing focus and concentrating on the bottom of the tank, which is where there’s no oxygen. Without oxygen, there cannot be an explosion.
But Gentry said if the tank was low and someone got below the level of the fuel and there was a spark, it could be dangerous.
In most cases, the tanks have to be replaced, which can cost up to $500 with parts and labor.
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Old 04-24-2008, 11:10 AM
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If only these thieves would use their brian's for good.
They might have a job somewhere making some honest money.
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Old 04-24-2008, 11:51 AM
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Originally Posted by crobtex View Post
Gas thieves targeting cars with new tactics

12:42 AM CDT on Thursday, April 24, 2008

By STEVE STOLER / WFAA-TV You can't drive ANYWHERE without seeing startling gas prices. The national average for a gallon of gas this week is $3.50. In the North Texas area, the average is now $3.43. .
Fixed for proper wording.
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Old 04-24-2008, 12:52 PM
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It's gonna get worse.....
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Old 04-24-2008, 01:13 PM
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All right,I'm open for (reasonable/sane) suggestions as to how to protect the fuel tank.Do we weld a plate to protect the bottom,front and back?
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Old 04-24-2008, 01:14 PM
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I'm just waiting till some goofball decides to highjack a tanker truck. Its going to happen!!!!
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Old 04-24-2008, 01:15 PM
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Really, this does not surprise me and I can't believe it has not happened sooner.

It really takes brains to think about drilling a hole in the bottom of a gas tank. Everytime you turn the drill on it creates internal motor sparks, the drill is running and at some point the gas is going to run out of the little hole and into the drill prior to them realizing what is happening and then KABOOOOMM! Lesson learned!
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Old 04-24-2008, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by cincydiesel View Post
I'm just waiting till some goofball decides to highjack a tanker truck. Its going to happen!!!!
Its funny you say that. We have 14 tankers we lease to Sheetz and their drivers just went through some training on hijack avoidance and some scenarios on hijack set-ups. You figure they haul 8600 gal @ 3.59 here now thats around 31g's
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Old 04-24-2008, 02:26 PM
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Originally Posted by irocpractice View Post
All right,I'm open for (reasonable/sane) suggestions as to how to protect the fuel tank.Do we weld a plate to protect the bottom,front and back?
I'd keep a light with a motion sensor aimed at the tank and for good measure have it wired to turn on a recording of someone racking a shotgun .
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Old 04-24-2008, 02:51 PM
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Originally Posted by RickG View Post
I'd keep a light with a motion sensor aimed at the tank and for good measure have it wired to turn on a recording of someone racking a shotgun .
Thats the ticket right there!
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Old 04-24-2008, 03:16 PM
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I knew the thieves were drilling the tanks for diesel, but for gas??? You have to be a complete idiot to do that. I love that news report that claimed there won't be an explosion because they drill the bottom of the tank, "which is where there’s no oxygen." Right! Until there's a spark outside the tank.

Eventually, these idiots are going to kill someone. I hope it's one of themselves.
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Old 04-24-2008, 03:44 PM
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There are many types of drills that don't require electricity to work, brace and bit, yankee drills all of them old but are all hand operated. Plus a lot of new tanks are made of plastic.
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Old 04-24-2008, 04:14 PM
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When I steal gas, I just use a plasma cutter.

That way I can make a larger hole and make the gas come out faster.
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Old 04-24-2008, 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by CalDodge View Post
There are many types of drills that don't require electricity to work, brace and bit, yankee drills all of them old but are all hand operated. Plus a lot of new tanks are made of plastic.
I don't care what kind of drill you have. If you are under a truck punching holes in tanks with an unknown quantity of gas in them, you are eventually going to be soaked in the stuff. One day the odds will catch up with these Nimrods. Good riddance, I say.

But I do hope the owner has full coverage on the vehicle.
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Old 04-24-2008, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by cincydiesel View Post
I'm just waiting till some goofball decides to highjack a tanker truck. Its going to happen!!!!
A local fuel oil company had a (full) delivery truck stolen out of their yard a couple weeks ago. Found empty and undamaged.
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