More Gas Tanks In SF Vandalized
by Breanna Fuss, Reporter
February 12, 2013 5:23 PM
Sioux Falls Police said vandals are stealing gas again, not from a gas station, but from other vehicles. Police said a few more vehicle owners woke up this morning to holes drilled in their gas tanks.
“I think anybody who doesn’t put their car in a garage would be worried,” said Julie Prochaniak, a resident of Oxbow Park Apartments.
Prochaniak lives in Oxbow Park Apartments, off of south Oxbow Avenue near Sertoma Park. When she left her apartment at 8:30 Tuesday morning, the smell of gas was in the air.
“I didn't pay much attention to it, but I could smell it when I came out,” said Prochaniak.
She said it wasn’t until she came home Tuesday afternoon she found out what had happened. Three vehicles had holes drilled into their gas tanks in what police say is an attempt to steal gas. Luckily, the gas thieves didn’t get to her car. But two trucks still sit in the smelly mess that has left Prochaniak wondering why.
‘I'm really surprised that it happened like right in front of the office, where there is a big security light,” said Prochaniak. “I would have thought more would have been out here where it is darker.”
Since January, police said there has been seven other gas tanks drilled around Sioux Falls and they are warning the person, or persons that are doing it, are posing a risk to not only themselves, but vehicle owners.
"These gas tanks have been plastic, so your not going to necessarily get a spark from that, but some cordless drills spark while you operate them,” said Officer Sam Clemens, Sioux Falls Police Department.
Clemens said people should start keeping an out for anything out of the ordinary.
“If you see someone crawling under a car, I would probably call the police on something like that,” said Clemens.
And as for Prochaniak, she said she’s sad for her neighbors, who woke up to a very unpleasant surprise.
“I feel sorry for them, with the price of gas, and now they will have to have repair work done, its the economy, its hard to have anything extra come up right now,” Prochaniak said.
Mechanics said the cost to replace a gas tank, depending on the vehicle, could cost anywhere from $300 to over $1,000.