City workers fill their tanks before gas prices rise - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

City workers fill their tanks before gas prices rise

August 29, 2005

Albany-- The city of Albany has a special locked in price each month for gas that can save tax money but Monday they got news that they could pay much more pretty soon.

Albany city crews are pulling up after a long day around town. "Been very busy," says fleet Superintendent Ken Johnson.

A busy day burns plenty of gas in the city vehicles especially when workers like James Edwards are on call for hurricane duty. "8 hour days but we're on call 24 hours you know," says Edwards. He's on call 24 hours but his sewer maintenance vehicle takes much more in fuel. "About 75 to 80 dollars," says Edwards.

Right now, the city has a locked price of $1.97 a gallon for unleaded and $2.01 for diesel but if Hurricane Katrina shuts down pipelines, prices could go way up. "So we don't get caught with that extra increase, we're trying to fill up everything we have and ordering the fuel now at the current price," says Johnson.

The city put in an order for 7,500 gallons of unleaded and 8,000 gallons of diesel at the current prices because those prices may jump 50 to 60 cents in just one day. "If that happens, that load that we have coming in tonight, 8,000 gallons times fifty cents, that's a good chunk of money," says Johnson.

A good amount of fuel is what these workers are filling their vehicles with in order to bring the reserves up at the current locked prices but they're also being warned to conserve to prevent the city from using other resources to fund the fuel bill. "Not at this point we are not. We try to keep the trucks in good running shape which helps conserve fuel and right now we seem to be doing real good," says Johnson.

Bad weather is keeping workers constantly on the move. "We're expecting a lot of rain tonight," says Edwards.

This means a lot more fillups at a price that could jump by the end of the next workday.

Fleet Supervisor Ken Johnson says by filling up at the current locked price, the city will be saving a couple thousand dollars but the city uses so much fuel that they'll have to buy another 14 or 15,000 gallons within the next two weeks. Those gallons would be at the new prices. The city doesn't have a concrete price yet but they don't expect prices to go down any time soon.

feedback: news@walb.com