By Andrew Keller, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
BAY COUNTY, MI (WNEM) -
This winter has been tough for people who use propane heaters.
Plummeting temperatures have sent the cost of propane sky high. One local man said he was prepared to pay the piper, but when his gas arrived, it was more than he had agreed to.
"It's been a little intense," said Brian Brissette, explaining Mid-Michigan's current freeze wave.
Brissette uses propane gas to heat his home and said when he recently ordered a refill from Ferrell Gas in Bay City, he got burned.
"I was quoted $3.31 per gallon. I said, 'OK, I will pay for 200 gallons.' My total bill was going to be $729.42. I said, 'Alright,'" said Brissette.
He ordered the gas on Wednesday, paid for it and the money was pulled from his account almost immediately.
"I paid for it in advance, and apparently it did not matter," said Brissette.
Because on Friday when it was delivered, his invoice was $60 more than he agreed to pay.
"When you go to the pump, you say ok, it's $3.31, you walk in the store, you hand them $50. I'm paying $50 worth at that price. Now when you go back out, all of a sudden the sign says $3.70; no one is going to accept that. This is absolutely no different," said Brissette.
He called the company and claims they told him the price jumped because that was the cost the day of delivery.
"I said this is completely wrong. This is price-gouging, and I said there's no call for it," said Brissette.
TV5 reached out to Ferrell Gas to ask them what gives and never got a response. Company policies on the Internet refer to people like Brissette as "will-call" customers who order gas when needed. According to those policies, "will-call" customers have their price determined on the date their delivery order is accepted.
"There's no reason, this day and age, this stuff should be happening, none whatsoever," said Brissette.
On Monday, Brissette said he contacted state's attorney general's office. He claims the representative he spoke to said the attorney general has been receiving complaints daily of price-gouging.
TV5 will continue to follow this story.
Click here to sign up for Breaking News texts, here for our email newsletters and alerts and here to follow us on Twitter.
Copyright 2014 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.