SUPPLY, NC (WWAY) — Some homeowners in Brunswick County say they’ve been left out in the cold by a propane company in Supply, with no way to keep warm, and no answers.
The lights are on, two white trucks and a yellow corvette are parked outside, but no one seems to be home… or at least, no one’s answering.
Campbell Propane is supplied by AmeriGas, and for the past few weeks, customers like Lori Graham have tried and failed to get in touch with both for a propane refill.
“Once you’re on hold for two,” Graham says, “three hours…they disconnect you. You can’t live chat because once you’re cued up to chat, they disconnect you.”
Graham’s knocked on Campbell Propane’s door every day for weeks, and called them and AmeriGas every day for a month. And she’s not the only one, says one concerned citizen from Sunset Beach:
“You wait on the phone for a good, little over an hour, every time. I just did it again this morning and 57 minutes I waited. And then you get a busy signal, they disconnect you.”
During the 45 minute interview WWAY’s Peyton Furtado held with Graham, four other AmeriGas customers from Sunset Beach, Southport, and Holden Beach drove up and knocked on Campbell Propane’s door, but, no answer and no help.
“You know,” says one Sunset Beach resident, “I live in a big development down in Sunset Beach and there’s tons of people in there that have had it to here.”
Graham is a regular customer, and takes care of her 79-year-old mother in Holden Beach. She says she’s out of propane, and AmeriGas has left her with very few options.
“So when a big corporation has you in control, it’s aggravating because they own the propane tanks on the property and you can’t get them filled from any other company.”
The temperature dropped to 33 degrees in Holden Beach Tuesday night, and with no help in sight, Graham says she had to decide between risking a house fire by leaving several space heaters on all night, or letting her elderly mother freeze.
“It’s just upsetting to think of how many people might be trying to get another source of heat in the house. Have carbon monoxide issues or fire issues. Just trying to heat their families or keep themselves warm.”
WWAY reached out to AmeriGas and Campbell Propane, but after being on hold two hours twice, our calls were disconnected.
AmeriGas later e-mailed us this statement with attached letters saying:
“Thank you for contacting us. We are aware that some of our customers aren’t getting their orders on time. It is a top priority of ours to satisfy these customers and we are making the adjustments necessary to fulfill these orders promptly. We recently sent a letter to customers to clarify what we are doing. We have attached that letter and FAQ for your reference and we hope this will help your report.”
AmeriGas included the letter it said it sent to its customers about the issue. Click here to read the letter from AmeriGas.
WWAY also reached out to several local propane stations in the Cape Fear. They confirm demand is way up this time of year, but they say they’ve been able to fill most orders within about a week.