Friday, May 30, 2008

False fueling

This post follows after I read a mail on petrol bunk frauds in B'lore. Courtesy Anu.

I almost always fill petrol from the same bunk. They follow a 50-150 tactics here. Wonder what I'm talking about? If you've ever been cheated while filling petrol at a bunk, you'd know. Or wait, you'll have to realise that you've been tricked.

Drive into a petrol bunk. Appear careless. Ask to fill for Rs.200. Chances are s/he'll enter 50 at the meter and make you believe you weren't clear when you spoke '200'. You'll find another 150 (200-50 right?) entered into the keypad. Fair enough? You wish. What actually happens is, the 150 ain't additional as you assume. Its the overall amount to be filled (wonder who designed it that way). So 150 is actually 150 starting at 50 => 100.

You've paid Rs.200/- for Rs.150/- worth of petrol. Done deal. Bye bye. A similar dupe can be made out of happy-sitting-inside-car-enjoying-AC you for any amount. Here is an account of how I dealt with it once.

I know the manager there personally, so brought him out to the operator and gave a good sounding. Actually, he produced bills generated by the pump itself; which showed bills for 50 + 150. The manager said, if the bill reads it then you can't have been cheated. But I know my bike's fuel gauge well and it doesn't lie. Yet, out of respect for the gentleman I left. But they trick you here too, after returning home, I took a closer look at the bill. It had timestamps. Rs.150/- was billed before the Rs.50 one. So the bill was right, only I was given the wrong bill. Another lesson learnt for fifty bucks!

There is no point writing letters to the govt., making noises about Consumer Rights etc. Its your money, get out and do the following.

  • If you're in a car, get down.
  • If you have a cellphone, don't use it
  • Don't pay before fueling your vehicle.
  • If you have to, better give the exact amount. 2 100 notes can't be seen as a 50.
  • If you're paying by card, get it swiped beforehand.
  • Don't take your eyes off the meter.
  • Do not pay heed to their hints at how nice your bike is, how much mileage you get, your tyres need air etc.
  • Don't check for 0s. Check for 8's instead!
  • Have sense. Don't be scared to question if you have a doubt.
  • Spread awareness instead of complaining.
Are you aware of any other similar tricks? Do comment about it.

Adieu. Happy fueling!


~LVS

9 comments:

Kunal said...

Something new, Thanks for sharing.
I was cheated once too at a petrol bunk in pursaiwalkam, I travelled a distance of more than 5 kms, the stops indefinetly.

Kick, Kick, Kick, Nothing happens.

I took it to a near by mechanic He decides to clean the carburator, [ i had got my bike service the previous day why would the carburator give me problem ], A fluid flowed out of the open pipe, It was water, Clear as Aquafina.
I was fooled, 200Rs for the petrol and 50Rs for the mechanic. Rs.250 for a newly learnt lesson.

Now is the day when i buy petrol only in a bottle, i check for the level and get to know if i'm being cheated or not.

Wondering what happened to the guy who filled it up with water?
Nothing. All the people who he was filling up was petrol, Wonder how i managed some water.

Getting petrol filled in a bottle and refuelling it in ur bike helps, It allows u to carry extra petrol when u require and it helps u check what u r being filled with.

Lot many tricks the petrol bunks follow, I guess we have to live with it.

LVS said...

@kunal
woah!
i've heard of kerosene being mixed,but water!!

and that's exactly my point, you don't have to live with it...you can take measures to go around these tricksters..we have to live with that

Akshaya said...

LV... good post!!! That should serve as a lesson for those who blindly trust petrol bunk guys and get cheated everytime!!

uleadin said...

whoa! whoa!

I'll be extra careful next time!

Prashanth said...

kaalam kettu kadakkardhu!

LVS said...

@akshaya
i hope so!

@uleadin
you seem to be the first to learn!

@prashanth
i know!
i heard some bunk managers don't mind because there aren't many takers for the operator job!

anuradha said...

Adulteration and fraudulence cannot be bumped off from fuel stations, or any public distribution system..
Consumers have to be smart and alert..

Next time the operator says that s/he heard 'lesser' than what i told, i will consider accepting that i have faint voice, pay lesser, head towards the next fooling, oops, filling station..

TD5M4PP3R said...

Dude.. I'm having some issues commenting from my OpenID account. None of my comments show up in your posts. Can you check if they are trapped by a spam filter?

LVS said...

@anuradha
hehe

@tdsmapper
it depends on what you posted!
were you trying to abuse someone?