Warning for readers

Diane Longmore, Constantia

A word of warning for readers. On Monday March 18, I filled my car with fuel at Ladies Mile Service Centre (Caltex). I have often filled up there and was confident that everything would be done efficiently, despite my being moved from one faulty pump to another.

I had a busy schedule and was working around load-shedding times, as are most of us these days.

I neglected my usual habit of checking the pump reading before I paid and drove off. However, when I reached home, I checked my credit-card receipt and saw that I had required over 81 litres of fuel to fill my 77-litre tank. Not possible.

While comparing this latest receipt with a previous recent one, I noted that my car had apparently been filled with unleaded petrol instead of diesel.

I was panic stricken and contacted the manager immediately to request action. He said he would have to contact his boss and revert to me. He did this, but partway through the conversation I had to cut it short, and we agreed to resume the discussion later.

Prior to my call, I had to rapidly rearrange lifts, meetings and an imminent appointment, as I was unable to use my car till the issue had been resolved. A huge ripple of stress and inconvenience ensued. Thank you to my friends and colleagues for your understanding and offers of assistance.

My husband and I drove to the filling station that afternoon and the situation was explained to us as follows: at some stage, two sales had been added together and amounts subtracted; the forecourt attendant had punched the incorrect rand amount into the hand-held credit-card machine, then he had entered unleaded petrol instead of diesel, and finally he had not checked any of those details with the pump reading.

All these errors resulted in my being overcharged by R60 and receiving a receipt that showed my car had been filled with petrol. The cherry on the top was being told that this has happened before!

This was an extremely unsettling and very disruptive experience. Be warned and be aware

The Bulletin phoned Mr Schreuder, the manager of this Caltex branch, on Tuesday March 19 and forwarded the letter to the email address he gave. A reminder was sent on Monday April 1. He did not respond by the time this edition went to print.