Gas under $4; lines circle Harlem & North
Car line up at the Shell station on North and Harlem avenues in River Forest when gas prices dipped under $4. | Bill Dwyer~Sun-Times Media
Updated: June 4, 2012 10:39AM
A dip under $4 per gallon for gas caused a traffic jam Friday afternoon at the Shell gas station at North and Harlem Avenues in River Forest.
Fahad Amwar, manager of the corporately owned station, said he got the green light to reduce the posted price for regular gasoline to $3.98 after seeing the neighboring Citgo station at that price.
It didn’t take long. Within minutes after 2 p.m. Friday, people were flocking to the station’s dozen pumps.
“I was driving by earlier and saw the $3.98 and filled my first car up,” said Emmanuel Carreno, 28, of Elmwood Park.
Carreno said he went home and came back with his other car to fill it up, but by then, the magic hour was over and the pump price was back to $4.18.
That still beats Chicago prices for gas, said Carreno.
“It’s $4.29 at Cermak and Cicero in Chicago.”
Sindya Roman, 31, of Chicago wasn’t as lucky. She pulled in to the Shell because she was near empty and had to wait in line.
“I was like, what the heck is going on?” she said. When she reached the pump around 3:20 p.m., she had to pay the $4.18 price.
With a 12-gallon tank, she stood to save about $2.40.
“I missed the bargain?” she said, with a playful growl. “Ohhhhh, grrrr.”
Roman wasn’t alone. Half an hour after the prices went back up, all but one of the stations pumps were in use.
Amwar, who said he regularly drops the posted price in response to nearby competition — he also dropped it Thursday — said the electronic signs on his station aren’t the only way people find out about the bargains fuel.
“People tell me they heard about our prices on Facebook and Gas Buddy,” he said.