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Published August 30, 2012, 09:46 AM

Some metro service stations switching to prepay only

Fargo-Moorhead (WDAY TV) - If you've filled up recently, you've probably noticed a growing trend in Fargo-Moorhead; a lot of gas stations are going to a prepay system. The root cause for many owners is the outrageous prices at the pump.

Fargo-Moorhead (WDAY TV) - If you've filled up recently, you've probably noticed a growing trend in Fargo-Moorhead; a lot of gas stations are going to a prepay system. The root cause for many owners is the outrageous prices at the pump.

The Cenex station right off of 4th and Main Avenue in Fargo switched to a prepay system this morning. The owner says he's just flat out tired of all the drive-offs.

Steve Bettenhausen – Gateway Service Center: “We always get the license plates, we've got 5 video cameras but collecting on them seems to be a hassle.”

Just yesterday, a $60 drive off here at the Gateway Service Center. Owner Steve Bettenhausen says he's out more than $200 in just the last five weeks, and police are fed up too.

Steve Bettenhausen: “The authorities want to prosecute them so we don't waste their time. They don't want to be a collection agency for us.”

Everyone agrees, the reason for drive offs - sky rocketing gas prices.

Johnathan Olves – Travelling from Minneapolis: “Ridiculous, so close to the oil fields, it should be cheaper.”

But for many, the switch means very little because they already pay with a card.

Rachel Leyk – Moving to Fargo Area: “I like it because I hate going in. When I'm getting gas it's on the go, it's quick.”

It was an easy decision for Bettenhausen - use a card, or prepay inside. It's a trend he believes will eventually be at every station.

Steve Bettenhausen: “Someday it will be, the bigger cities already are and we're getting big now.”

Gas prices throughout Fargo are averaging about $3.68; up 20 cents in a month. Bettenhausen says there were a few confused people today that didn't know exactly how prepay worked, but so far, no negative complaints on the switch.

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