Over 1,000 Gallons of Diesel Fuel Stolen Using Van Trap Door in Houston, Texas
Thieves are the absolute worse. I've stated many times that thieves are the lowest of the low. Its in the 10 Commandments "Thou shalt not steal." But still, there are people with enough evil in their heart and complete disregard for other people that want to take what is not theirs. A person or persons is doing just that in Houston by using a "trap door" to steal diesel fuel from a station's fuel tank.
During the week of March 7th, the owner of the family owned Fuqua Express gas station, Jerry Thayil, began noticing some weird readings from his fuel tanks. He started reviewing security footage and noticed that what looks like a black mini van would park over the access panels to the station's underground fuel tanks, no one would get out, then it would drive away.
This happened three times during that week with around 350 gallons of diesel fuel stolen each time. On Friday, March 11, Jerry was in his office when he say the mini van pull up for a fourth time. This time, Jerry ran into the parking to confront the van. The mini van sped off without getting any fuel this time. That whole incident was captured on security video.
In the video, you get a good look at the mini van and the dealer tag that is on the van. This is something that is also becoming a bigger problem in Texas and across the country, fake dealer tags. It's very possible these people are using a fake dealer tag so they don't have to register the vehicle or even not have to purchase insurance for it.
Jerry Thayil has notified the Houston police about this theft but no leads have turned up as of this writing. Keep an eye on your vehicles as stories of gas theft will start to become the norm until prices start to drop again.
AAA has the following tips to avoid becoming a gas theft victim:
- If you have a garage, park in it.
- When parked in a public area, park in a well lit, heavily traveled area.
- Park in a fenced in area or a parking garage near the exit, stairs or elevator as that will have the most foot traffic.
Just stay aware of your surroundings at all times as you never know when a nefarious person could be around.