A handmade sign out front of a gas station that reads "All pumps closed".

Photo Credit: City Light Slides / Flickr

Is a Locally Owned Gas Station the Best Solution?

Quadra Islanders worried about closure

The only gas station on Quadra closed because local folks don’t want to work for the current management

The owners of the Gas N Go on Quadra Island have had trouble finding staff lately. In fact, the whole station closed on Thursday morning when a staff member walked out. That staff member taped a sign to the door that said: “Closed due to terrible ownership and management.”

Harley Rybchuk used to work at the station. He says he isn’t surprised that the staff up and quit. He told CBC that he walked away from his job last month after his managers asked him to work more than forty hours a week with no overtime pay.

Wayne Procter, who owns the Quadra gas station, also owns more than twenty other Gas N Go stations on Vancouver Island. Procter lives in Nanaimo and owns liquor stores, hotels, and other businesses. He lists Richard Branson as his only interest on LinkedIn.

Jim Abram is the area’s elected regional district director. He lives on Quadra, and he told CBC that he’s heard about staff problems linked to conflicts with the station’s management for years.

Abram also knows that Quadra needs a gas station. “We need service seven days a week,” Abram told CBC.”We either need to have good management that understands that Quadra Island cannot do without a gas station, or we need to replace [it] with another entity.”

Abram suggested that Quadra may need a locally owned co-op station instead.

Blaine Smith owns Maple Meadows Painting and Contracting on Quadra. He told CBC that issues with the gas station could be “absolutely crippling” for folks who use scooters or mopeds to get around the island. 

He also thinks that a locally owned station could be a solution. That way, the owner might be more responsible and invested in the well-being of the Quadra community.