Winter weather brings fuel woes

By Carly O'Keefe
BENTON, MO (KFVS) - As days pass without power in parts of the Heartland, folks aren't just filling up their vehicles at gas stations; they're taking extra to keep their homes working in the wake of the winter storm.
"We just came out to get gas for our generators so we can be warm and all that," said Michael Bowers of Charleston.
In a lot of areas--getting gas isn't as easy as pulling in and filling up.
"I used all my gas driving around today trying to find somewhere to get gas," said Bowers.
With widespread power outages, even finding a gas station that's open is a challenge.
"Once the power's out, it doesn't matter how many fuel stations there are in that area if they can't support electricity to pump the gas nobody's getting any fuel," said Deputy Roy Moore of the Scott County Sheriff's Department.   
The stations that are open attract folks from a distance, a lot of them.  The Express Gas station in Benton Missouri is running on generator power.  Many of the folks who filled up there were relieved to see lights on and pumps running.   
"The part of Sikeston we live in south side has power, and there are two gas stations there a mile or so long line," said Sammy Fontain of Sikeston.
"There's limited places to get it, the lines are long when you get to a place and then the problem of supply comes in, sometimes you'll get there and they'll run out," said Moore.
An Ameren Electric spokeswoman says after a big ice storm in 2006 that company started preparing for the difficulties of fueling up.  Ameren now has its own fuel trucks that are used to refuel their line trucks so their crews don't have to wait in long lines or search for gas.