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WALL, N.J. – Last week, approximately 17 motorists along the New Jersey Garden State Parkway were stranded by water tainted gasoline purchased from Wawa gas stations, the Asbury Park Press reported.
Lt. John Galvin told the newspaper that 11 vehicles were affected by "tainted gas" from the Wawa on Route 34 just before 8 p.m. Thursday. Since the incident occurred after rush hour, the disabled vehicles "did not cause any serious traffic problems," Galvin said.
The incident was followed by police reports citing more than 60 cars that were stalled along the Parkway after filling up at Lukoil stations in Fort Lee and Bloomfield. Lukoil spokesman George Wilkins told the Asbury Park Press that water in bulk storage tanks at a north Jersey gas distributor was likely to blame.
The state Office of Weights and Measures responded to the scene and reported that the contaminated fuel was removed and the station's tanks were flushed. The following day the newspaper reported that the station was expected to re-open, with what Gavin said was "a fresh batch of fuel" in their tanks Friday morning.
Lee Straube of Eatontown and his wife, Lorraine, have purchased gasoline from the same Wawa for more than a year without issue. He was surprised to get the call from Lorraine who was among the stranded.
"She got a full tank and then called me and said she was pushing the car back home," Straube told the Asbury Park Press adding that some cars that received gasoline at the Wawa didn't even make it out of the parking lot.
The Asbury Park Press reported that Straube received word from a Wawa corporate representative that the gasoline was tainted with water, and that the company would pay for the cost of towing the car to the dealership, a rental car and repairs to the vehicle.