High Gas Prices Driving People to Take Extreme Measures

Gas prices seem to reach a new record high every day, with no end in sight. To get money to fill up their gas tanks, people are resorting to donating blood and plasma.

On a sadder note, there are even people out there who are just stealing gas. Gas thieves are getting bolder in their efforts to get gas either for themselves or to sell on the black market. did a story yesterday about how Ohioans near Cleveland are flooding a local plasma clinic. Here’s an excerpt: "

Business at the ZLB Plasma Service on Cleveland’s near west side is booming. The company pays as much as $40 per visit for a donor’s first four visits, less after that. Each person who donates plasma may do so no more than two times a week.

The waiting area is packed with people like Geanie Fox and her boyfriend. "I come here twice a week and I have to, because it’s like the only place we can get money quickly for gas," said Fox.

ZLB’s parent company says donations are up, attributing the increase to what they call the economic downturn.

Tialiegh Henry said she just started donating plasma last week as gas prices take a bite out of her family’s budget.

"That was my reason for doing it," said Henry. "I just needed the money to fill up my gas tank."

Elsewhere in the country, Arizona Blood Services is offering free gas to those who donate blood, the Arizona Daily Star reported last week."

On to the gas theft problem. Most of us have heard that one can siphon gas out of a tank to steal it. But with more people buying locking gas caps, which require a key to open, gas thieves are just going right to the source.

Thieves are going under the cars and drilling holes directly in the tank to siphon out the gas. This leaves the victim with an expensive fuel tank repair.

Other ways thieves steal gas are drive-offs at the gas station, cutting the fuel line and running a hose to get the gas or just going to gas stations and breaking into the underground tanks in the middle of the night. reported that a fuel tanker driver in Houston, Texas was actually held at gunpoint by a masked man who didn’t want his wallet, he wanted the whole tanker of fuel. The thief got it and after the tanker was found empty days later, officials said he probably sold the fuel on the black market.

So now when we fill up our tank, we have to worry whether or not we’re going to get mugged for our gas? What has this fuel crisis come to?