A video of a mobile petrol station at Tampines Avenue 9 has recently surfaced on the Internet, sparking heated discussions among netizens regarding its legality.
The two-minute long video, uploaded by SG Road Vigilante on Monday (March 6), shows two tanker trucks at an open-air carpark.
Describing the scene, a male voice behind the camera says in Hokkien: “They’re selling fuel over here!”
A man, dressed in a yellow shirt, can also be seen walking around the lot with a hose, fuelling vehicles with diesel.
Another woman, in a purple top, was also issuing receipts to drivers.
A reporter from Lianhe Zaobao visited the site on Wednesday night, and found that the tanker trucks had already left the carpark.
However, some drivers in the area told the Chinese daily that these mobile petrol stations at car parks have been around for quite some time. On occasion, there would be three or four different groups of people selling diesel.
One driver, who declined to be named, identified the woman in the video as the boss of one of these mobile petrol stations.
“[The woman] and her employees will usually drive the tanker trucks into the carpark in the day. Sometimes there’s also a van or lorry accompanying them,” he said.
“She usually drives a Mercedes or a Porsche, and she’s in charge of collecting money and issuing receipts. Her workers will then refuel the vehicles.”
Responding to Zaobao’s queries, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) said that they are currently investigating the matter.
The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) told AsiaOne that they are aware of the video circulating on social media and they are currently investigating this fire safety violation.
Under the Fire Safety Act, it is an offence to store or dispense petroleum and flammable materials at unlicensed premises.
AsiaOne has contacted URA for more information.
‘White pumps’ in Singapore
Back in 2014, a Straits Times investigation found that as many as 10 companies were selling diesel illegally at “white pumps” around the island.
Industry players told The Straits Times then that these “white pumps” — which earned their name from selling unbranded fuel — are able to sell diesel at discounted prices as they do not incur the same costs faced by oil firms.
These include higher land cost of sites approved for fuel retail, infrastructure such as underground tanks, amenities such as toilets and air pumps, and advertising and marketing.
According to URA guidelines, only certain industries – such as those in transport-related fields – are allowed to set up their own diesel pumps. The fuel must be for their own use and cannot be sold to the public.