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Winter of discontent for some Skyline residents

Original post made on Jan 24, 2016

This winter has been a difficult one at times for some households in La Honda and Woodside along the ridge of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Residents using propane to heat their homes and water have reported repeated shortages.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, January 21, 2016, 2:52 PM

Comments (8)

Posted by Amerigas issues continue
a resident of Woodside: Skywood/Skylonda
on Jan 24, 2016 at 2:05 pm

Amerigas' answer in the article is not appropriate. They answer like there is no problem.
They can't solve the problem if they don't admit there is one.
If they have everything in place like she says, people would not run out of gas regularly, it is their job to check the tanks on a regular basis, that must not be happening as so many people are running out of gas, we ran out today!!!
Any good propane company knows you need to check tanks more often when it is cold and when the power goes off often. Many houses up here have whole house generators so when the power goes off, they burn more propane than usual.
Good luck getting gas if there is a football game on.
They need more drivers/trucks if they have lots of gas and people are running out of gas.
Check my tank weekly, if you want my business! I'm out.

Posted by Menlo Voter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jan 24, 2016 at 3:33 pm

Menlo Voter. is a registered user.

Here's a novel concept; perhaps those that have propane tanks take responsibility for THEMSELVES and check their propane levels THEMSELVES? That way they can make sure they order propane before they run out. I know people taking responsibility for themselves is a really strange concept to some people, but if they try it they might actually like it. Self reliance.

Posted by Coupon clipper
a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Apr 9, 2016 at 8:39 am

Yo..... y'all wanted cheap gas.

Your choice. Next time don't go for the discount.

Posted by Wall o' gas
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Apr 9, 2016 at 9:43 am

Great idea - go with the low bidder. Its only heat and hot water.

Posted by fwiw
a resident of Woodside: other
on Apr 9, 2016 at 7:24 pm

> take responsibility for THEMSELVES and check their propane levels THEMSELVES?

This portends a non-understanding of the contract agreement with Amerigas. In return for the bulk purchase discount, you agree to accept them keeping your tank filled at operating levels but at their timing. This give them the advantage of being able to deliver fuel at timing advantageous to them in terms of quantity, market and convenience of delivery. But surely if they are going to sign up to deliver the fuel at their timing, that does not abrogate THEIR responsibility to keep the tank going as they committed to when you signed with them.

It's not like their are a huge number of firms competing in this space, and after Amerigas merged with Northern Energy, they are certainly the largest. This past Winter there were many, many accounts of folks calling well in advance to "remind" Amerigas that they were down to their last 30% and that delivery was getting to be critical and still they ran completely out, necessitating a mandatory safety check before heaters and pilots could even be relit after protracted periods of begging for delivery. And for those with rental tanks, they were a captive audience who could not even turn to an alternate supplier.

I think if Amerigas is going to be in the business of having a program where THEY decide when to refill it is not unreasonable to expect a modicum of respect for the residents they have signed up to service.

Posted by Coupon clipper
a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Apr 10, 2016 at 8:26 am

So.... You're saying Amerigas is too big to fail? Violated anti-trust when it merged? They forced you to use them? Free market buyer beware, needs regulation?

No locally owned company?

Or you just went for the discount price and service? And it burned you?

What ARE you telling us in your tale of woe?

Posted by contract
a resident of Woodside: other
on Apr 10, 2016 at 9:58 am

If Amerigas is violating their service contract, then sue them for breach of contract. Sounds like you have enough disgruntled customers to chip in for legal fees. If you signed a contract that provides less service than you expected, then who's fault is that?

Posted by Wall o' gas
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Apr 10, 2016 at 10:58 am

"Amerigas is one of five propane suppliers listed on the Skyline Propane Users Group website. The users group is an offshoot of the South Skyline Association, a community organization"

Their coalition for community organizing failed in a basic tenet - when offered 5 alternatives, many went with the cheapest deal in a global vendor that could care less.

Most community organizations recognize the value in local control and support. Sort of like talking about supporting local, but then going past the local shops to get a cheaper product 10 miles away at Walmart.

Takes ten seconds to find the corporate owner: "UGI International primarily serves the propane markets of 16 Western and Central European countries"

another 10 seconds to find the THOUSANDS of complaints against Amerigas: Web Link

Hope they didn't spend all the money they saved in one place. Take the loot you saved to hire a lawyer.

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