Police seek gas thief who caused fire at Ashland fuel station

Police are looking for a white pickup seen near the site of a fuel theft at 60 Shamrock Lane in Ashland on Jan. 14 that resulted in a fire at the facility. Image via Ashland Police Department
January 19, 2023

Fire broke out at commercial station early Saturday, Jan. 14

By Stephen Floyd, Ashland.news

The Ashland Police Department (APD) is seeking the public’s help after an alleged gas thief stole hundreds of gallons of fuel and caused a fire at a local gas station last weekend.

On Jan. 14 at around 2:40 a.m., APD and Ashland Fire & Rescue responded to a commercial fueling station at 60 Shamrock Lane after reports of a fire. The station is just north of Ashland Street, just west of the bridge over the railroad tracks and and east of Mountain View Cemetery.

The flames were extinguished with no reported injuries, and a subsequent investigation revealed the fire was sparked while someone was illegally siphoning gas from underground tanks. APD said hundreds of gallons were stolen from the tank, as well as fuel from a nearby piece of construction equipment, before the thief was interrupted by the fire.

Surveillance camera footage showed a white or light-colored extended-bed, crew-cab pickup with gray trim near the scene hauling a small trailer. Video also showed embers from the fire falling on a nearby storage facility and foliage, and police said the incident could have led to far greater losses were it not for the cold winter weather.

“This theft and the fire it caused presented an immediate and serious threat to the surrounding neighborhoods and the Ashland community,” according to a news release issued Thursday, Jan. 19, by the APD. “Had this fire been at a different time of year, it would have easily caused a major threat to adjacent residences and businesses.”

Police have yet to make an arrest in the matter and are encouraging anyone with information to contact authorities. The APD tipline is 541-552-2333 and calls can be left anonymously. Information can also be shared through tipline@ashland.or.us.

Email Ashland.news reporter Stephen Floyd at sfloydmedia@gmail.com.

Embers from a gas station fire at 60 Shamrock Lane in Ashland on Jan. 14. Police believe a thief siphoning gas caused the blaze. Image via Ashland Police Department

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Bert Etling

Bert Etling

Bert Etling is the executive editor of Ashland.news. Email him at betling@ashland.news.

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