Twitter’s got petrol

2011-07-19 14:17

Desperate motorists have taken to social network site Twitter to find fuel stations with enough supply in the midst of a crippling strike by petroleum industry workers.

This at a time when they are waiting with bated breath for an announcement by striking unions over whether they will be accepting the newly revised offer tabled by employers.

Unions in the sector were demanding a 13% increase and a 40-hour working week while the employers’ latest offer stands at between 8 and 10%, depending on the employment level.

Unions – Chemical, Energy, Paper, Printing, Wood, and Allied Workers Union (Ceppwawu), the Allied Workers Union, the General Industries Workers Union of SA and Solidarity – will seek feedback from their members over the latest offer put forward by employers in fuel-strike negotiations.

Ceppwawu coordinator John Appolis said his union was reporting back to its members and would take up to two days before a decision is announced.

More than 70 000 workers affiliated to Ceppwawu, the Allied Workers Union, the General Industries Workers Union of South Africa and Solidarity are taking part in the strike.

The strike, which left filling stations across South Africa without fuel for more than a week, is likely to cost the country’s economy billions of rand in lost output.

Motorists have, in the meantime, resorted to Twitter – where users are able to get real-time updates of which petrol stations still have petrol across the country using the hashtag #gotpetrol.

A new website www.gotpetrol.co.za has since been established and amassed over a thousand followers with the number expected to increase.

The site had more than 15 000 page views last Friday, a mere 24 hours after being set up.

Here are some of the #gotpetrol tweets

Ofentse Mogotsi: “Eish, now need petrol 2 get there! RT @KgomotsoMatsu: RT @Kgomotsomeso: Total on Moroka Nancefield Road in Soweto opp the SPCA #Gotpetrol”

Bonang Matheba: “Shell. William Nicol by Hyde Park. #GotPetrol RT @FistazMixwell: Didn’t take this petrol thing seriously until today. Boy am I suffering?!!!”

Lebo Mashile: “The shell garage in Parkhurst is pumping petrol like it’s going out of style! I’ve never seen queues like this #gotpetrol”

Lorna Watson; “#gotpetrol Athlone Park Service Station in Durban – as empty as Murdoch’s morals”

Edwin Mbugua: “Just saw a SHELL Tanker being escorted by Police in Bedfordview... #GotPetrol”

Gus Silber: “Petrofied: Feeling you get while driving around, needle on E, frantically trying to find a pump that’s #gotpetrol.”

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