Like most Gaborone motorists, Ntuka Orapeleng has suffered the pain of filling up at fuel stations from hell: Drivers who will not move from the fuel pump while waiting for their change; fuel pumps that do not have customer friendly instructions and petrol attendants who are more interested in gossip than guiding customers to the right pump, but the worst on her gross-o-meter was when she recently had her new diesel bakkie filled with unleaded petrol.
The Marketing Director of Cleanico (Pty) drove her 3-month-old Toyota Hilux Diesel bakkie to Pula Filling Station in Gaborone West to fill up her tank. The fuel pumps were not marked and she found herself at the mercy of an attendant who did not have the presence of mind to realize that he was filling up a diesel bakkie with unleaded petrol.
Although the vehicle tank lid is marked ?DIESEL?, she said the petrol attendant filled the car with the wrong fuel. A little while later, the vehicle stalled and she did not know why. From the roadside, she reported the problem to Motor Centre, the garage where she bought the car from. An examination carried out at the garage revealed that petrol rather than diesel had been poured into her car. ?The fuel tank photos of the filling station show clearly that there are no labels,? she told The Sunday Standard.
?There isn?t even a sign at this filling station to alert the customers that ?the filling station will not be held liable to any damages done to customers? cars.?? Orapeleng?s vehicle is still parked at the Motor Center with a damaged system and the case has become a legal issue. Orapeleng is urging filling station owners to use the labels that not only talk to their workers but also to their customers. ?It is high time the Filling Station owners take customer service very seriously, especially in these big businesses like theirs,? said Orapeleng. ?If there are changes, customers should be made aware or taught about them in good time.?