Technical glitch provides 100s of motorists with nearly free petrol

Drivers rushed to tank up when the pump price at three stations in western Finland plummeted overnight to 14 cents/litre.

At present, a litre of 95-octane petrol is priced on average around 1.78 euros. Image: Marianne Mattila / Yle

A technical fault slashed the pump price for 95-octane petrol at three stations at Paimio, Raisio and Aura in western Finland in the early morning hours of Friday.

From about half past midnight until 6AM, pumps at these stations were offering petrol at 14 cents per litre, rather than the more than 1.8 euros many drivers have been paying over the past few weeks.

A reader told Yle that hundreds of motorists descended on the stations during the night, filling tanks and canisters.

Rami Kalliomäki, group manager of the Turku Cooperative TOK, which operates the stations, confirmed reports of the rush to pump cheap petrol.

"Let's say that if you compare it to a normal night, there was a lot more traffic at these stations," he says with a laugh.

According to Kalliomäki, thousands of litres of cheap fuel were sold during the night. At present, a litre of 95-octane petrol costs on average around 1.78 euros.

"It is a pity for our customers that we no longer have any more cheap petrol," Kalliomäki says.